Risk perception and self-management in urban, diverse adults with type 2 diabetes: The improving diabetes outcomes study

Erica Shreck, Jeffrey S. Gonzalez, Hillel W. Cohen, Elizabeth A. Walker

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

26 Scopus citations


Purpose and Background: The relationship between risk perceptions and diabetes self-care remains ambiguous. This study aimed to assess baseline, 1-year follow-up, and change score relationships among perceived risk, diabetes self-care, and glycemic control for adult individuals participating in a behavioral intervention that improved glycemic control relative to the active control. Method: One-year randomized trial compared a behavioral telephonic intervention with a print only intervention. Participants (N=526) are members of a union/employer sponsored health benefit plan, with HbA1c≥7.5 %, prescribed at least one oral diabetes medication. Participants rated perceived risk of diabetes and its complications and diabetes self-care at baseline and 1 year. Data were collected in a large urban area in the USA. Results: There were no relationships between risk perceptions and glycemic control during the study. Baseline perceived risk predicted follow-up self-care. Additionally, participants assigned to the intervention group showed significant changes in dietary and exercise adherence at high levels of risk knowledge and low levels of optimistic bias. Conclusion: Perceived risk relates to dietary, exercise, and medication adherence in diabetes. The perceived risk construct might foster a more coherent conceptualization of the relationship between one's diabetes, possible complications, and diabetes self-care behaviors.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)88-98
Number of pages11
JournalInternational Journal of Behavioral Medicine
Issue number1
StatePublished - Feb 2014
Externally publishedYes


  • Diabetes
  • Glycemic control
  • Risk perception
  • Self-care

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Applied Psychology


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