Dissertation/Thesis Abstract

The effects of type 1 diabetes: Understanding healthy siblings' psychosocial adjustment due to family outcomes
by Unrue, Heather Erin, Ph.D., Palo Alto University, 2015, 152; 3733466
Abstract (Summary)

Type I Diabetes (T1D) is one of the most common chronic illnesses in childhood. Supports can play a pivotal role in aiding families affected by chronic illness to cope (Gerhardt, Walders, Rosenthal, & Drotar, 2006; Gavin and Wysocki, 2006); however, when attachment figures become unreliable and unsupportive, it can interrupt child outcomes (Charuvastra & Cloitre, 2008; Feeney, 1999; Mikulincer, Shaver, & Horesh, 2006; VanIjzendoorn, Goldberg, Kroonenberg, & Frenkel, 1992).

Seven sibling-parent dyads of children affected by T1D were studied using the PedsQL to evaluate Health-Related Quality of Life (HRQoL), the CRIES-13 to evaluate post traumatic stress symptoms, the BASC to evaluate behavioral and emotional functioning, the LEAP to evaluate perception of caregiver availability, the MSPSS to evaluate the parent self-reported level of support, and the BSI to evaluate the parent social-emotional functioning. This pilot studied evaluated whether siblings mirrored past study results (Alonzo, 2000; Droter, 2006; Gerhardt, et al., 2003; Hollidge, 2001; Kenney, 2010; Landolt, et al., 2003; Lombardo, 2005; Newby, 1996; Sharpe & Rossiter, 2002), and then proceeded to evaluate how HbA1c and parent-child factors may have impacted the sibling results.

This sample did not appear to be impacted by the level of HbA1c control or mirror prior chronic illness study demographics. Further, neither the parent's reported support level nor the siblings' perception of parental availability appeared to impact sibling outcomes. However, there was a significant relationship between sibling CRIES and mother's LEAP scores, as well as a post-hoc analysis relationship between the Child Total PedsQL score/PedsQL Family Impact score and siblings' qualitative indication of felt loss of attention to the T1D child and desire for more sibling support groups. Taken together, this study suggests that parent support variables may not be core to sibling outcomes for the T1D population; however, it is important to remember that significant results may have been masked due to the relative health of this particular sample and the low N, especially given the post-hoc analysis results. Future research on parent-child factors impacting sibling outcomes should occur, as it could generate new treatment protocols to better the lives of families impacted by T1D.

Indexing (document details)
Advisor: Packman, Wendy
Commitee: Cordova, Matt, Field, Nigel, Habarth, Janice
School: Palo Alto University
Department: Psychology
School Location: United States -- California
Source: DAI-B 77/04(E), Dissertation Abstracts International
Subjects: Health sciences, Clinical psychology, Individual & family studies
Keywords: Chronic illness, Parental availability, Pediatric health, Siblings, Trauma, Type 1 diabetes
Publication Number: 3733466
ISBN: 978-1-339-21743-7
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