What is the impact of individually conducted education on outcomes in diabetes mellitus (DM)?

Updated: Oct 23, 2019
  • Author: Romesh Khardori, MD, PhD, FACP; Chief Editor: George T Griffing, MD  more...
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Answer

A randomized, controlled trial found that for patients with poorly controlled diabetes, individual attention and education is superior to group education. [96] Similarly, a diabetes education and self-management group program in the UK for newly diagnosed patients failed to yield significant benefits. [97] Nonphysician health professionals are usually much more proficient at diabetes education and have much more time for this very important activity.

A systematic review suggested that patients with type 2 diabetes who have a baseline HbA1c of greater than 8% may achieve better glycemic control when given individual education rather than usual care. Outside that subgroup, however, the report found no significant difference between usual care and individual education. In addition, comparison of individual education with group education showed equal impact on HbA1c at 12-18 months. [98]

Patient education is an immensely complex topic, however. The clinical impression of most experts in the field is that there is merit in the provision of careful diabetes education at all stages of the disease.


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