Frequency of monitoring diabetes in primary care: What do well-controlled patients prefer?

Paulien R. Wermeling*, Maureen van den Donk, Kees J. Gorter, Joline W.J. Beulens, Guy E.H.M. Rutten

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

Abstract

Objective: To describe the preferences and the associated patients' characteristics of well-controlled type 2 diabetes patients for the diabetes monitoring frequency in primary care. Methods: Cross-sectional study with 233 participating general practitioners across the Netherlands. Eligible patients were between 40 and 80 years, diagnosed with type 2 diabetes for more than 1 year not on insulin, and with glycated hemoglobin (A1C) ≤7.5%, systolic blood pressure ≤145 mm Hg and total cholesterol ≤5.2 mmol/L. Participants were asked whether they had a preference for 3-monthly or 6-monthly monitoring or no preference. Results: From 2215 patients, 747 patients (33.7%) preferred 3-monthly and 677 (30.6%) 6-monthly monitoring by either the general practitioner or the practice nurse. The former group consisted of less smokers, felt less healthy, reported more diabetes-related distress, had the highest reported frequency of hyperglycemic episodes and used more oral blood glucose lowering drugs compared to the other patients. Those preferring 6-monthly monitoring were least satisfied with diabetes treatment, reported the lowest frequency of hyperglycemic episodes and used less oral blood glucose lowering drugs compared to the other patients. Conclusion: A preference for more frequent monitoring was associated with a worse disease status, whereas a preference for less frequent monitoring tended to be associated with the opposite. Patients seem to have logical preferences that need to be accounted for in diabetes care.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)187-192
Number of pages6
JournalCanadian Journal of Diabetes
Volume36
Issue number4
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Aug 2012

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