Test Predicts Elderly Patients' Ability to Learn Insulin Self-Injection Technique

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Number of animal names recalled in one minute was the most useful indicator
Number of animal names recalled in one minute was the most useful indicator

(HealthDay News) — A cognitive test involving animal name recall can predict which elderly patients succeed in mastering an insulin self-injection technique within one week, according to a study published online Aug. 28 in the Journal of Diabetes Investigation.

Taichi Minami, from the Yokohama City University in Japan, and colleagues evaluated whether or not a cognitive test (the number of animal names recalled in one minute) by 57 elderly inpatients with type 2 diabetes starting insulin therapy could be used as a predictor of patients' ability to acquire the insulin self-injection technique within one week.

The researchers found that the number of animal names recalled was the most reliable predictor of the ability to acquire the insulin self-injection technique within one week. Recall of 11 animal names predicted a successful acquisition, with a sensitivity of 73 percent and a specificity of 91 percent (area under the curve, 0.87; P < 0.01).

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"To our knowledge, no studies have reported that cognitive tests can be used to evaluate whether or not patients can acquire the insulin self-injection technique," the authors write.

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