Clinical utility of mental state screening as a predictor of intellectual outcomes 6 months after diagnosis of type 1 diabetes

Pediatric Diabetes, 05/17/2012

Nadebaum C et al. – Cognition is impaired acutely in a significant number of children presenting with newly diagnosed type 1 diabetes. Mental state screening is an effective method of identifying children at risk of ongoing cognitive difficulties in the days and months following diagnosis. Clinicians may consider mental state screening for all newly diagnosed diabetic children to identify those at risk of cognitive sequelae.


  • Mental state of 87 patients presenting with newly diagnosed type 1 diabetes was assessed using the School-Years Screening Test for the Evaluation of Mental Status.
  • Cognitive abilities were assessed 1 wk and 6 months postdiagnosis using standardized tests of attention, memory, and intelligence.


  • Thirty-seven children (42.5%) had reduced mental state at diagnosis.
  • Children with impaired mental state had poorer attention and memory in the week following diagnosis, and, after controlling for possible confounding factors, significantly lower IQ at 6 months compared to those with unimpaired mental state.

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