Preventing diabetes distress in adolescents with type 1 diabetes: Results 1 year after participation in the STePS program

Korey K. Hood*, Esti Iturralde, Joseph Rausch, Jill Weissberg-Benchell

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

25 Scopus citations


OBJECTIVE: The aim is to report 1-year outcomes of the Supporting Teens Problem Solving (STePS) study, a randomized controlled trial comparing a distress and depression prevention program with a diabetes education program for adolescents with type 1 diabetes. RESEARCH DESIGN AND METHODS: With 264 adolescents in two locations (Chicago and San Francisco Bay Area), a randomized controlled trial was conducted comparing the Penn Resilience Program for type 1 diabetes (PRP T1D) to Advanced Diabetes Education. Interventions lasted 4.5 months, and assessments were conducted at baseline, and 4.5, 8, 12, and 16 months. Outcomes of interest were diabetes distress (DD), depressive symptoms, resilience, diabetes self-management, and glycemic control. Latent growth curve modeling was used to test between-group differences over time. RESULTS: Results indicate that there was acceptable randomization and exposure to interventions, and that exposure to PRP T1D was associated with substantial reductions in DD. In addition, stable glycemic control, resilience characteristics, and depressive symptoms were observed 1 year post-treatment. Diabetes management deteriorated in both groups. CONCLUSIONS: Intervening before symptoms of psychological distress start can prevent the development of the DD commonly seen in adolescents with type 1 diabetes. The STePS program represents a promising prevention program, and future reports on 2- and 3-year outcomes will explore benefits over longer periods of time.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1623-1630
Number of pages8
JournalDiabetes care
Issue number8
StatePublished - Aug 1 2018

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Internal Medicine
  • Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism
  • Advanced and Specialized Nursing


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