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Year : 2015  |  Volume : 19  |  Issue : 3  |  Page : 378-382

Knowledge of hypoglycemia and its associated factors among type 2 diabetes mellitus patients in a Tertiary Care Hospital in South India

1 Department of Community Medicine, Sri Ramachandra Medical College and Research Institute, Porur, India
2 Department of Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism, Sri Ramachandra Medical College and Research Institute, Porur, India
3 Department of Obstetrics and Gynaecology Nursing, Faculty of Nursing, Sri Ramachandra University, Porur, India
4 Department of Medical and Surgical Nursing, Sri Ramachandra University, Porur, India
5 Faculty of Nursing, Vitamed Centre, Kottivakkam, Chennai, Tamil Nadu, India

Correspondence Address:
Vanishree Shriraam
Department of Community Medicine, Sri Ramachandra Medical College and Research Institute, Porur, Chennai - 600 116, Tamil Nadu
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/2230-8210.152779

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Introduction: Hypoglycemia being the rate limiting complication in the attainment of strict glycemic control in diabetes management, in this study, we intended to study the knowledge of its symptoms, target blood levels during treatment and ways of prevention among type 2 diabetes patients attending Outpatient Department (OPD) of a medical college hospital. Materials and Methods: Every fifth patient attending the OPD during the 4 months between March and June 2013 was interviewed using a questionnaire. Results: The study included 366 type 2 diabetic patients, of which 76.5% were females. The target fasting and postprandial blood glucose levels while on treatment was known to 135 (36.9%) and 126 (34.4%) patients, respectively. The common symptoms of hypoglycemia known to the study subjects were dizziness (81.4%), weakness (73.8%), and drowsiness (72.1%). Overall, 242 (66.1%) diabetic patients had good knowledge on hypoglycemia (knowledge of at least three symptoms of hypoglycemia together with at least one precipitating factor and at least one remedial measure). Higher age, illiteracy, low socioeconomic status were associated with poor knowledge whereas treatment with insulin along with oral hypoglycemic agents was associated with good knowledge on hypoglycemia. Sex and duration of disease were not associated with knowledge on hypoglycemia. Conclusion: Although the knowledge on symptoms of hypoglycemia, precipitating factors, remedial measures are high in this study, the target blood levels, complications were known to just a third of them. There is a knowledge gap on important aspects of hypoglycemia among type 2 diabetic patients.

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