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PLoS One. 2013 Jun 21;8(6):e67659. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0067659. Print 2013.

As Facts and Chats Go Online, What Is Important for Adolescents with Type 1 Diabetes?

Author information

1
Division of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, Department of Clinical and Experimental Medicine, Linköping University, Linköping, Sweden ; Center for Medical Technology Assessment, Department of Medicine and Health Sciences, Linköping University, Linköping, Sweden.

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

Continued refinement of resources for patient information, education and support is needed. Considering the rapid development of new communication practices, the perspectives of young people themselves warrant more attention using a wide research focus. The purpose of this study was to understand information-seeking behaviours, Internet use and social networking online in adolescents with type 1 diabetes (T1DM). This applied to their everyday life, including the context of diabetes and their experiences and need of contact with T1DM peers.

METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS:

Twenty-four adolescents aged 10-17 years with T1DM were recruited from a county hospital in the south-east of Sweden. Qualitative data were obtained using eight focus groups, wherein each participant engaged in a 60-90 minute video/audio-recorded session. The focus group data were transcribed and analysed using qualitative content analysis. Some demographic and medical information was also collected. The three main categories that were identified; Aspects of Security, Updating, and Plainness and their sub-categories gave significant information about how to enhance information retrieval and peer contacts related to T1DM. Regarding the persons' information-seeking behaviour, Internet use, and use of social media some differences could be identified depending on gender and age.

CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE:

Sensitivity and adaptation to users' needs and expectations seem crucial in the development of future online resources for adolescents with T1DM. To start with, this could mean applying a wider range of already existing information and communication technologies. Health practitioners need to focus on the areas of security of information and communication, frequency of updating, and simplicity of design-less is more.

PMID:
23805322
PMCID:
PMC3689681
DOI:
10.1371/journal.pone.0067659
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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