Type 2 diabetes mellitus (DM) is a growing problem among Latino adolescents. An even bigger problem is the lack of adherence to self-management of the disease within this population. Little is known about what adolescents perceive as barriers to diabetes self-management. The proposed study will utilize grounded theory in a qualitative design to explore and understand the barriers to effective diabetes self-management care from the perspective of Latino adolescents with type 2 DM. This study will elicit descriptions of diabetes self- management strategies and decision-making used by Latino adolescents and will develop an explanatory framework of type 2 DM self-management among these youth. Diabetes management during adolescence is challenging due to many physical, psychological and cognitive changes, and it has been reported that 50% of adolescents with chronic diseases do not comply with care recommendations. In order to avoid diabetes related complications and lifelong consequences to the health of these individuals, it is necessary to understand how to overcome the barriers to diabetes self-management. It is expected that the research findings will guide the development of culturally and age appropriate interventions to improve self- management adherence and consequently improve metabolic control within Latino adolescents. The principal investigator is a second year PhD student at UCLA School of Nursing with extensive clinical and research experience in the area of type 2 DM. The research plan is to recruit 20 to 30 Latino adolescents with diagnosis of type 2 DM for at least 12 months. Focus groups and individual interviews will be used for data collection.
Type 2 diabetes is no longer a disease for adults. In the last 2 decades type 2 diabetes has become a big health problem within adolescents and it affects mostly minorities. It is very important to understand how adolescents make decisions about their diabetes care in order to help them overcome barriers to treatment and avoid future diabetes related complications. The reason why only Latino adolescents will be in this study is because they are among the most affected by type 2 DM and also because they are the fastest growing minority group in the United States.