The purpose of this study was to examine youths' knowledge of the hemoglobin Ale (HbAlc) test and glycemic control. Seventy youths (11-16 year olds) with type 1 diabetes were interviewed concerning their knowledge of the HbAlc test, health risks associated with particular HbAlc values, and their own glycemic goals. Results revealed that only 13% of youths accurately described the HbAlc test. Fewer correctly identified the HbAlc ranges for good, fair, and poor glycemic control. The majority of youths did not know the blood glucose values corresponding to specific HbAlc results. Only a small number of youth correctly estimated the short-term and long-term risks associated with maintenance of HbAlc of 7% and 12%. In this sample of mostly lower income, minority youths with type 1 diabetes, there was a significant lack of knowledge concerning the meaning and implications of the HbAlc test. Findings suggest that interventions for this patient population should use the HbAlc test results to help young patients to better understand and set goals for their glycemic control.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health
- Developmental and Educational Psychology
- Clinical Psychology