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Diabetes Res Clin Pract. 2011 Jan;91(1):54-60. doi: 10.1016/j.diabres.2010.09.036. Epub 2010 Nov 13.

Motivational interviewing delivered by diabetes educators: does it improve blood glucose control among poorly controlled type 2 diabetes patients?

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Department of Behavioral Medicine Research, Baystate Medical Center, 140 High Street, Room 2104, Springfield, MA 01105, United States.



To determine whether glycemic control is improved when motivational interviewing (MI), a patient-centered behavior change strategy, is used with diabetes self management education (DSME) as compared to DSME alone.


poorly controlled type 2 diabetes (T2DM) patients (n=234) were randomized into 4 groups: MI+DSME or DSME alone, with or without use of a computerized summary of patient self management barriers. We compared HbA1c changes between groups at 6 months and investigated mediators of HbA1c change.


study patients attended the majority of the four intervention visits (mean 3.4), but drop-out rate was high at follow-up research visits (35%). Multiple regression showed that groups receiving MI had a mean change in HbA1c that was significantly lower (less improved) than those not receiving MI (t=2.10; p=0.037). Mediators of HbA1c change for the total group were diabetes self-care behaviors and diabetes distress; no between-group differences were found.


DSME improved blood glucose control, underlining its benefit for T2DM management. However, MI+DSME was less effective than DSME alone. Overall, weak support was found for the clinical utility of MI in the management of T2DM delivered by diabetes educators.

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