Psychological functioning of children with insulin-dependent diabetes mellitus: a longitudinal study

J Pediatr Psychol. 1990 Oct;15(5):619-32. doi: 10.1093/jpepsy/15.5.619.


Assessed school-age youth repeatedly over the first 6 years of their insulin-dependent diabetes mellitus (IDDM) to determine self-perceived psychological adjustment. After the first year of IDDM, Ss exhibited a mild increase in depressive symptoms. Anxiety decreased for boys but increased for girls over the duration of IDDM. In contrast, self-esteem remained stable regardless of rehospitalizations or degree of metabolic control. Ss' adjustment shortly after IDDM onset, as reflected by levels of depression, anxiety, and self-esteem, were predictors of later adjustment. In general, Ss found the implications of IDDM more upsetting and the regimen more difficult with time, and girls were more upset by their illness than boys. The degree to which children were upset by the implications and management of IDDM varied as a function of their anxiety and depression.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Adaptation, Psychological*
  • Adolescent
  • Age Factors
  • Attitude to Health
  • Child
  • Depression / diagnosis
  • Diabetes Mellitus, Type 1 / blood
  • Diabetes Mellitus, Type 1 / diagnosis
  • Diabetes Mellitus, Type 1 / psychology*
  • Female
  • Hospitalization
  • Humans
  • Longitudinal Studies
  • Male
  • Personality Inventory
  • Self Concept
  • Sex Factors
  • Social Adjustment*