Title

Type I Diabetes Mellitus in Children and Pre-Adolescents: Affective, Behavioral, and Social Correlates

Date of Award

12-2007

Degree Type

Dissertation

Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy

Major

Psychology

Major Professor

Derek R. Hopko

Committee Members

Robert G. Wahler, Debora R. Baldwin, Robert E. Levey

Abstract

Type I diabetes mellitus (T1DM) is the most common metabolic disorder among children and adolescents (Wysocki, Greco, & Buckloh, 2003) and research has indicated that children with T1DM are more likely to develop clinical depression and anxiety relative to children without T1DM. Building on this literature, the present study utilized a multi-method assessment strategy of self- and parent-reported depression, anxiety, behavioral regulation (i.e. internalizing and externalizing behaviors), social competence, personality, and family dynamics to identify whether preadolescents with T1DM were distinguishable from children without T1DM, and also whether psychosocial differences were evident in the T1DM group as a function of treatment (i.e., insulin injection vs. insulin pump). The findings demonstrated that there were significant differences between the Diabetes and Non-Diabetes groups among parent-report measures of social deficits (i.e., CBCL Social Problems and Aggressive behaviors subscales, PIC-2 Dyscontrol subscale, and FES Independence subscale), cognitive difficulties (i.e., CBCL Thought Problems subscale and PIC-2 Cognitive Problems subscale), somatic complaints (ex. PIC-2 Somatic Complaints and Psychosomatic Preoccupations subscales), and mood problems (ex. PIC-2 Psychological Distress and Depression subscales). The data indicated differences between T1DM children in good versus poor metabolic control on a measure of personality (i.e. Withdrawal and Isolation subscales of the PIC-2). The findings also revealed differences between the insulin pump and insulin injection users among self and parent-reported measures of mood difficulties and behavior problems (i.e., CDI Anhedonia subscale and PIC-2 Withdrawal and Isolation subscales).

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