Perception of physiologic cues to hyperglycemia in the person with Type I Diabetes Mellitus




Clark, Angela

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The problem of this descriptive-correlational comparative investigation was to determine the relationship between the perception of selected physiologic cues to hyperglycemia and the occurrence of hyperglycemia. Additionally, the research studied differences in subjects who used self-glucose monitoring and those who did not. Selye's stress theory and physiologic principles provided the theoretical framework.

The sample of the study consisted of 40 subjects with Type I diabetes. Thirteen null hypotheses were formulated and tested at the .05 level of significance. Statistical analyses were done using the one-sample chi-square test, the two-sample chi-square test, Pearson's product moment correlation coefficient, the t-test, Fisher's Z test, and descriptive analyses.

The following findings were revealed: (1) The perceptions of thirst, polyuria, and headache were not significantly related to the occurrence of hyperglycemia. (2) The perception of fatigue, drowsiness, and blurred vision were significantly related to the occurrence of hyperglycemia and occurred more often than expected. (3) The perceptions of visual changes, itching, and nausea were significantly related to the occurrence of hyperglycemia but occurred less often than expected. (4) Subjects were unable to significantly correlate estimates of blood glucose with actual blood glucose levels, however, 33% of the subjects were able to estimate blood glucose within 27 mg/dl of the actual blood glucose level. Self-monitors and non-monitors did not differ significantly in their ability to predict glucose levels. (5) The incidence of complications from diabetes was high. Perceived and expressed anxiety levels about present and future complications were lower than expected. (6) Expressions of anger, irritability, and depression was suggested by subjects as cues to hyperglycemia.



Conscious perception, Diabetes, Physiologic cues, Self-glucose monitoring