, Volume 44, Issue 2, pp 207-215
Date: 30 May 2012

Multisystemic Therapy Compared to Telephone Support for Youth with Poorly Controlled Diabetes: Findings from a Randomized Controlled Trial

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Few interventions have effectively improved health outcomes among youth with diabetes in chronic poor metabolic control.


This study aims to determine whether multisystemic therapy (MST), an intensive, home-based, tailored family treatment, was superior to weekly telephone support for improving regimen adherence and metabolic control among adolescents with chronic poor metabolic control.


A randomized controlled trial was conducted with 146 adolescents with types 1 or 2 diabetes. Data were collected at baseline, 7 months (treatment termination), and 12 months (6 months follow-up).


Adolescents receiving MST had significantly improved metabolic control at 7 (1.01 % decrease) and 12 months (0.74 % decrease) compared to adolescents in telephone support. Parents of adolescents receiving MST reported significant improvements in adolescent adherence. However, adolescent-reported adherence was unchanged.


MST improved health outcomes among adolescents with chronic poor metabolic control when compared to telephone support. Home-based approaches may provide a viable means to improve access to behavioral interventions for such youth.