Psychological moderator variables and metabolic control in recent onset type 1 diabetic patients--a two year longitudinal study

J Psychosom Res. 1994 Apr;38(3):249-58. doi: 10.1016/0022-3999(94)90120-1.


The relationships between psychosocial adjustment and subsequent glycaemic control were prospectively examined in forty-three adult patients during the first 2 yr after onset of type 1 diabetes mellitus. Decreasing depression was the single psychosocial parameter that changed over time. No correlations were found between the decrease in HbA1c levels and psychological variables at 8- and 16-month follow-ups. Global and specific coping features such as high control attitude, low coping anxiety and low emotional attribution correlated significantly with the decrease in HbA1c levels at the 2-yr follow-up, whereas stressful life events, depression, state-trait anxiety did not correlate. In a regression analysis coping explained 22% variance of the 2 yr decrease in HbA1c levels. We conclude that coping is a better predictor for metabolic control than emotional adaptation and life events. Metabolic control might deteriorate with prolonged stage of the disease being a first sign for psychophysiological coping exhaustion.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adaptation, Psychological
  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Anxiety Disorders / psychology
  • Blood Glucose / analysis*
  • Cross-Sectional Studies
  • Denial, Psychological
  • Depressive Disorder / psychology
  • Diabetes Mellitus, Type 1 / blood*
  • Diabetes Mellitus, Type 1 / psychology*
  • Female
  • Glycated Hemoglobin A / analysis
  • Humans
  • Life Change Events
  • Longitudinal Studies
  • Male
  • Prospective Studies


  • Blood Glucose
  • Glycated Hemoglobin A