Medical Resource Use, Disturbance of Daily Life and Burden of Hypoglycemia in Insulin-treated Patients With Diabetes

Results From a European Online Survey

William D Willis; Jesús I Diago-Cabezudo; Anne Madec-Hily; Aftab Aslam


Expert Rev Pharmacoeconomics Outcomes Res. 2013;13(1):123-130. 

In This Article


During a 3-week period in May–June 2011, patients diagnosed with Type 1 (50% of patients) and Type 2 (50%) diabetes in the LifeScan (a Division of Ortho Clinical Diagnostics, High Wycombe, Buckinghamshire, England) patient database were selected for inclusion in a 10-min, online, market-research survey. Initial contact with patients was via e-mail with a link to the online survey. Eligibility criteria included patient authorization to be contacted via their supplied e-mail address; all patients had to be receiving insulin treatment (includes those on oral therapy and insulin). Patients were selected from the UK (n = 480), France (n = 564) and Germany (n = 804). Patients were asked to respond to a total of 11 key questions (the complete questionnaire is available as supplementry material and can be found online at: about their understanding, perceptions and daily experiences of hypoglycemia and SMBG. Regarding 'Understanding of hypoglycemia', for example, patients were asked: "Do you agree or disagree with the following statements about your experience of hypoglycemia?" Reponses comprised: "Understand what it is", "Do not always recognize signs", and "Body does not give warning".

A major hypoglycemic episode (severe) was defined as hypoglycemia where the patient became unconscious or required assistance from someone else. Minor hypoglycemia was defined as a time when a patient's glucose readings were low.

Descriptive statistics (mean and/or percentage) were applied to responses for each question, and statistical significance was calculated using a standard two-sample test of proportions; a p-value <0.05 was considered to be statistically significant. The approximate healthcare burden of hypoglycemia on emergency room visits and hospital admissions was estimated using the following assumptions of insulin-treated patient numbers with diabetes in the three countries: UK (Type 1: 325,000 patients; Type 2: 460,000 patients); France (Type 1: 250,000 patients; Type 2: 625,000 patients) and Germany (Type 1: 450,000 patients; Type 2: 1,650,000 patients) [LIFESCAN, DATA ON FILE].