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The purpose of this study was to develop an Internet coping skills training program and to evaluate its feasibility and acceptability compared with an Internet education intervention for teenagers with type 1 diabetes. A multiphase mixed-methods design with focus groups, a randomized pilot study, and a program evaluation was used. Teenagers with type 1 diabetes, parents, and health professionals were included in the development and evaluative phases along with the research and information technology team. The pilot study included 12 teenagers with type 1 diabetes (mean [SD] age, 14.4 [.90] years; 58% female; mean [SD] duration of diabetes, 5.9 [3.0] years). Psychosocial data and HbA1c levels were collected at baseline and at 3 and 6 months. Results indicate that the development of a psychosocial Internet intervention was complex and required multiple iterations of development and evaluation. Results of this study also indicate the feasibility and acceptability of translating a group-based intervention for teenagers with type 1 diabetes to the Internet. Thus, this study demonstrates a systematic approach to Internet intervention development. Including teenagers with type 1 diabetes and a multidisciplinary professional team into the intervention design was critical to the success of this project.
OBJECTIVE To report results from YourWay, an Internet-based self-management intervention for adolescents with type 1 diabetes. RESEARCH DESIGN AND METHODS A total of 72 adolescents with type 1 diabetes, ages 13-17 years, were randomized to a usual-care-plus-Internet support or a usual-care group. The intervention was designed to enhance problem-solving barriers to self-management. A1C was obtained from medical records, and problem-solving and self-management were obtained via adolescent report. RESULTS Group differences were not statistically significant using intent-to-treat analyses. Using as-treated analyses, adolescents in the treatment condition showed statistically significant improvement in self-management (d = 0.64; P = 0.02) and important improvements in problem-solving (d = 0.30; P = 0.23) and A1C (d = -0.28; P = 0.27). Mean A1C for the intervention group remained constant (-0.01%), while the control group increased (0.33%). CONCLUSIONS This brief trial suggests that self-management support delivered through a secure website may improve self-management and offset typical decreases in adolescent glycemic control.
In a sample of 72 mothers with and without a history of depression and their adolescent children, maternal depression history, current maternal depressive symptoms, intrusive and withdrawn parental behavior, and adolescent caretaking behaviors were examined as predictors of adjustment in these youth. Two types of caretaking behaviors were examined: emotional (e.g., caring for a parent's emotional distress) and instrumental (e.g., looking after younger siblings). Although adolescents of mothers with and without a history of depression were comparable on levels of both types of caretaking, caretaking was associated with adolescents' reports of anxiety-depression and mothers' reports of social competence only for adolescents of mothers with a history of depression. Moreover, regression models showed that among children of mothers with a history of depression, emotional, but not instrumental, caretaking was related to adolescents' anxiety-depression symptoms and social competence after controlling for current parental depressive symptoms and stressful parenting behaviors. Theoretical and clinical implications are discussed.
Genetic susceptibility to antisocial behavior may increase fetal sensitivity to prenatal exposure to cigarette smoke. Testing putative gene x exposure mechanisms requires precise measurement of exposure and outcomes. We tested whether a functional polymorphism in the gene encoding the enzyme monoamine oxidase A (MAOA) interacts with exposure to predict pathways to adolescent antisocial behavior. We assessed both clinical and information-processing outcomes. One hundred seventy-six adolescents and their mothers participated in a follow-up of a pregnancy cohort with well-characterized exposure. A sex-specific pattern of gene x exposure interaction was detected. Exposed boys with the low-activity MAOA 5' uVNTR (untranslated region variable number of tandem repeats) genotype were at increased risk for conduct disorder (CD) symptoms. In contrast, exposed girls with the high-activity MAOA uVNTR genotype were at increased risk for both CD symptoms and hostile attribution bias on a face-processing task. There was no evidence of a gene-environment correlation (rGE). Findings suggest that the MAOA uVNTR genotype, prenatal exposure to cigarettes and sex interact to predict antisocial behavior and related information-processing patterns. Future research to replicate and extend these findings should focus on elucidating how gene x exposure interactions may shape behavior through associated changes in brain function.
OBJECTIVE - Type 2 diabetes is a growing problem among adolescents, but little is known about self-management behaviors in this population. Our aim was to examine self-management behaviors and glycemic control among adolescents with type 2 diabetes.
METHODS - From 2003 to 2005, a telephone survey of adolescents with type 2 diabetes was performed. Chart review obtained most recent glycated hemoglobin and clinical characteristics. Analyses compared patient characteristics and self-management behaviors to recent glycated hemoglobin levels.
RESULTS - Of 139 patients contacted, 103 (74%) completed the study. The mean age was 15.4 years: 69% were girls, 47% were white, and 46% were black. Mean glycated hemoglobin was 7.7%, and the average duration of diabetes was 2.0 years. More than 80% of patients reported > or = 75% medication compliance, and 59% monitored blood glucose > 2 times daily. However, patients reported frequent episodes of overeating, drinking sugary drinks, and eating fast food. More than 70% of patients reported exercising > or = 2 times a week, but 68% reported watching > or = 2 hours of television daily. Nonwhite patients had higher glycated hemoglobin and hospitalizations per year compared with white patients. In multivariable analyses, nonwhite race remained significantly associated with higher glycated hemoglobin even after adjusting for age, gender, BMI, insurance status, and other factors. Nonwhite patients were more likely to watch > or = 2 hours of television per day (78% vs 56%), to report exercising < or = 1 time per week (35% vs 21%), and to drink > or = 1 sugary drink daily (27% vs 13%).
CONCLUSION - Although patients reported good medication and monitoring adherence, they also reported poor diet and exercise habits and multiple barriers. Nonwhite race was significantly associated with poorer glycemic control even after adjusting for covariates. This may, in part, be related to disparities in lifestyle behaviors. Additional studies are indicated to further assess self-management behaviors and potential racial disparities in adolescents with type 2 diabetes.
Recent literature has emphasized the need to examine executive functions (EF) in children using multiple sources, including both parent rating and performance-based measures. Computerized Go/No-Go tests, including commercially available continuous performance tests (CPTs), represent one of the most commonly used methods of assessing inhibitory control - a variable central to the executive function construct. We examined the relationship between parent ratings of inhibitory control and CPT performance in two mixed clinical samples. Experiment 1 examined 109 children ages 6-18 using the Behavior Rating Inventory of Executive Function (BRIEF; Gioia, Isquith, Guy, & Kenworthy, 2000) and the Conners' CPT-II (Conners, 2000). In this sample, ratings on the BRIEF Inhibit scale (mean T-score = 62.3) were significantly higher than the CPT-II commissions score (mean T-score = 50.7; p < .0001); and the BRIEF and CPT-II scores were not highly correlated (r = - .12). Experiment 2 examined a sample of 131 children ages 7-18 using the BRIEF and the Tests of Variables of Attention (TOVA; Greenberg, 1996). In this sample, parent ratings on the BRIEF Inhibit scale (mean T-score = 56.8) were similar to TOVA commissions scores (mean T-score = 58.6; p = .33), although still poorly correlated (r = -.02). Factor analyses exploring covariance between BRIEF scales CPT-II variables (Experiment 1) and between BRIEF and TOVA (Experiment 2) yielded similar findings. In both experiments, all eight BRIEF scales loaded on a single factor, with no overlap with either the CPT-II or the TOVA. In mixed outpatient clinical samples, the BRIEF appears to measure different elements of inhibitory control than those assessed by computerized continuous performance tests.
Adolescents may engage in health risk behaviors that increase their likelihood of injury. Employment places adolescents at risk of work-related injuries. This study responds to the paucity of data on the relationship between adolescent health risk behaviors and work-related injury. This cross-sectional study included the administration of anonymous surveys to ninth graders (n=4914) who attended high schools in south Texas. An aggregate risk score (ARS) was developed based on health risk behaviors. The ARS was analyzed as an outcome using linear regression. Associations between health risk behaviors and work-related injury were assessed with logistic regression. Of the respondents, 19% reported they had a job, and 14% reported that they had been employed in farmwork. Farmwork-related injury was reported by 9% of adolescents, and 12% reported other work-related injury. Mean ARS scores were significantly higher (p < 0.05) for both male and female adolescents who reported a work-related injury compared to nonworking adolescents, and for males who had done migrant farmwork compared to all other adolescent males. The ARS increased as hours worked per week increased. After controlling for confounding factors, a statistically significant association was found between ARS and non-farmwork, work-related injury, but not between ARS and farmwork-related injury. Farmworkers with high ARS were more likely to report non-farmwork, work-related injuries. The predictors of work-related injury in the adolescent groups, particularly for farmworkers and migrants who are under additional stress, remain an important occupational health area to be addressed.
OBJECTIVE - To investigate differences in associations between physical activity and overweight for students in two adjacent areas on the border between Mexico and the United States of America: students in the city of Matamoros, Mexico, and Mexican-American students in the Lower Rio Grande Valley (LRGV) area of southern Texas. Since the extremely high prevalence of overweight among Mexican-American adolescents is well-recognized, we wanted to determine whether overweight has become a problem among Mexican adolescents as well.
METHODS - Students from 6 schools (n = 653), representing 11% of the ninth-grade students in Matamoros during 2002-2003, and students from 13 high schools (n = 4,736), representing 22% of the ninth-grade students in the LRGV during 2000-2001, completed questionnaires. Polytomous logistic regression was performed to estimate the risk of being at risk for overweight (> or = 85th percentile to < 95th percentile of body mass index (BMI) for age and sex) and the risk of being overweight (> or = 95th percentile of BMI-for-age and sex) versus normal weight that were associated with measures of physical activity. For simplicity, the classification of normal weight also included underweight.
RESULTS - A higher percentage of adolescents in the LRGV were at risk of overweight (17%) in comparison with adolescents from Matamoros (15%). The percentages of LRGV and Matamoros adolescents who were overweight were identical (17%). LRGV adolescent boys (OR = 0.87, 95% CI = 0.77-0.98) who participated in team sports were less likely to be at or above the 85th percentile of BMI-for-age and sex. Although of borderline significance, Matamoros and LRGV adolescent boys who participated in physical education classes were less likely to be at risk for overweight. Among neither the Matamoros students nor the LRGV students were any of the various other physical activity categories or levels associated with being at risk for overweight or being overweight.
CONCLUSIONS - Nearly one-third of the students in both Matamoros and the LRGV are at risk for overweight or are overweight. Implementation of interventions on healthful dietary choices and participation in physical education classes and sports teams are essential for reducing the extremely high prevalence of overweight among students on both sides of the Texas/Mexico border.
OBJECTIVES - To examine the relationship between an aggregate risk score (smoking, drinking, and number of sex partners) and measures of youth assets in a sample of 3439 youth aged 14-18 years.
METHODS - Linear regression models for African American and white males and females predicted an aggregate risk score.
RESULTS - After adjustments, the youth asset most predictive of risk was self/peer values regarding risk behaviors. Perceived school support was also predictive.
CONCLUSIONS - Taking an ecological approach to the measurement of adolescent health behaviors contributes to our understanding of these risk behaviors.