Adolescents’ views and experiences of treatments for Type 2 diabetes: a qualitative study.

Katrina M Turner, John Percival, David Dunger, Torsten Olbers, Timothy Barrett, Julian P Hamilton-Shield

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle (Academic Journal)peer-review

6 Citations (Scopus)


AIM:To explore adolescents' views and experiences of different treatments for Type 2 diabetes, in order to improve treatment concordance and consider how the current treatment pathway for adolescent Type 2 diabetes could be improved.
In-depth interviews were held with 12 adolescents who had been diagnosed with Type 2 diabetes. Adolescents were sampled from a UK cohort study. Data were analysed thematically.
Interviewees struggled to maintain lifestyle changes. Insulin, metformin and liraglutide were described as effective but, in some cases, as resulting in side effects. Injected treatments were viewed less favourably than oral medications. Weight loss surgery was considered an acceptable treatment for obese adolescents who had tried other treatments for their diabetes. It was apparent that some adolescents had not been surprised by their diagnosis and did not fully appreciate the implications of having diabetes. It was also evident that some individuals had not told peers about their diagnosis due to fearing how they would react. Factors identified as improving treatment concordance included reminders and viewing treatment as effective and easy to take.
Adolescents want treatments that are effective, discrete, easy to take and do not make them different from their peers. As liraglutide was described as effective, and surgery viewed as acceptable in certain circumstances, greater consideration should be given to their potential role in treating adolescent Type 2 diabetes. Practitioners need to ensure that adolescents appreciate the implications of having diabetes and may want to address adolescents' concerns regarding how others view this condition
Original languageEnglish
Article number 25186101
Pages (from-to)Epub ahead of print
Number of pages1
JournalDiabetic Medicine
Early online date3 Sep 2014
Publication statusPublished - 2014


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