PERCEPTIONS OF COMPLICATIONS INCLUDING REPRODUCTIVE HEALTH PROBLEMS AMONG ADOLESCENTS AND YOUNG ADULT FEMALES WITH TYPE 1 DIABETES (T1D)

Nicole Charache, Ingrid M. Libman, Denise C. Charron-Prochownik, Ana Diaz, Andrea Rodgers Fischl Faculty Mentor: Denise Charron-Prochownik University of Pittsburgh School of Nursing Health Promotion and Development 3500 Victoria Street 239 Victoria Bldg. Pittsburgh, PA 15261

Introduction: Uncontrolled diabetes increases the risk of complications. Glycemic control can prevent/delay retinopathy (RET), neuropathy (NEUR), nephropathy (NEPH), cardiovascular problems (e.g., high blood pressure [HBP]), and reproductive health (RH) complications. Females with diabetes have further risk for pregnancy-related complications. Metabolic control is more challenging to achieve during adolescence. Raising awareness regarding these issues is imperative during this time. Furthermore, the American Diabetes Association recommends initiating discussion of preventing RH complications starting at puberty. Purpose: To explore perceptions of diabetes-related complications among young adult and adolescent (AYA) women with T1D. Methods: A survey was conducted through a transitional care program at a large tertiary Children’s Hospital. Small group education/discussion sessions were held on topics relevant to adolescents with T1D transitioning from pediatric to adult care (RH, complication prevention, self-management, and initiating discussions with health care providers). 38 participants (ages 16-25 yrs) were given a survey prior to the program to explore their concerns with complications; ranking complications on a scale of 1 (most concerning) to 5 (least concerning). This abstract reports on the females’ data (n=16). Results: RET received the highest ranking as primary concern (from 38% [n=6] of the sample). RH was ranked as the primary concern by only 25% (n=4) of the sample, while 56% (n=9) ranked RH complication concerns very low. Conclusion: In this sample, most females lacked concern for diabetes-related RH complications. Since most sexual activity begins during adolescence, to prevent unplanned pregnancies and these complications, RH and preconception counseling (PC) awareness programs should be initiated at this age. The Transition Clinic provides an ideal setting to initiate and continue these discussions.


Additional Abstract Information

Presenter: Nicole Charache

Institution: University of Pittsburgh School of Nursing

Type: Poster

Subject: Nursing

Status: Approved


Time and Location

Session: Poster 4
Date/Time: Thu 3:40pm-4:40pm
Location: Wellness Center - Tripod 1 Side C