International Journal of Clinical Pharmacy

, Volume 34, Issue 3, pp 490–500 | Cite as

Evaluation of educational needs in patients with diabetes mellitus in respect of medication use in Austria

  • Rosa Lemmens-GruberEmail author
  • Christine Hahnenkamp
  • Ulrike Gössmann
  • Jürgen Harreiter
  • Majid-Reza Kamyar
  • Barbara Julienne Johnson
  • Steve Hudson
  • Alexandra Kautzky-Willer
Research Article


Background Effective control of diabetes mellitus type 1 (DM1) and type 2 (DM2) can reduce the development and progression of diabetic complications. Therefore, patient education should be considered as an integral part of diabetes management. Objective The aim of the study was to assess DM patients’ perception of knowledge for their medication and attitude towards self-management and pharmacist’s role. Setting The study was conducted at the diabetes out-patient clinic at the Vienna General Hospital (AKH), Division of Endocrinology and Metabolism, Department of Internal Medicine III, Austria. Method The study was a cross sectional survey using patient data from a validated patient questionnaire and medical records. Medical records were evaluated by applying a medication assessment tool. Main outcome measure To assess the quality of diabetes self management the following outcome measures are considered: HbA1c levels, pre- and post-prandial blood glucose levels, prevention of acute episodes of hypo- and hyperglycaemia, reduction of macrovascular risk factors, short term quality of life, adverse effects and treatment tolerance. Results The present study comprised 225 patients with DM1 and 201 patients with DM2, respectively. In comparison to DM2 patients, cardio- and cerebrovascular diseases were diagnosed very rarely in patients with DM1. The risk for these diseases was higher in patients with other factors of the metabolic syndrome, in addition. Overall, 118 of these patients participated in the questionnaire. The level of positive response on diabetes self-care and knowledge with respect to medication for the prevention of diabetes complications, glycaemic control, and treatment goals in diabetes was 81.8 %. The comparison of patients’ perceptions of diabetes self-care and knowledge showed differences among subgroups. Higher perceived knowledge and self-care apparently was associated with DM1. Additional findings of this study indicate that patients do not expect community pharmacists to be integrated in a multidisciplinary diabetes care team. Conclusion Although the level of positive response was found to be high there is still a minority of patients whose level of comprehension appears to be insufficient. Intense pharmaceutical care including patients’ education within a multidisciplinary team could contribute to improvements in those patients.


Austria Diabetes care Disease management Endocrine disorders Metabolic syndrome Patient education Primary care 




Conflicts of interest



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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  • Rosa Lemmens-Gruber
    • 1
    Email author
  • Christine Hahnenkamp
    • 1
    • 2
  • Ulrike Gössmann
    • 1
    • 2
  • Jürgen Harreiter
    • 3
  • Majid-Reza Kamyar
    • 1
  • Barbara Julienne Johnson
    • 2
  • Steve Hudson
    • 2
  • Alexandra Kautzky-Willer
    • 3
  1. 1.Department of Pharmacology and ToxicologyUniversity of ViennaViennaAustria
  2. 2.Institute of Pharmacy and Biomedical SciencesStrathclyde University GlasgowUnited Kingdom
  3. 3.Unit of Gender Medicine, Department of Internal Medicine III, Division of Endocrinology and MetabolismMedical University of ViennaViennaAustria

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