The association of health literacy with glycemic control in Saudi patients with type 2 diabetes

Abdulrahman H. Mashi, Dalal Aleid, Sarah Almutairi, Faisal Khattab, Abdullah N. AlMuqawed, Shawana Khan, Nora AlBanyan, Imad Brema, Naji J. AlJohani


Objectives: To identify the prevalence of health literacy among adult Saudi with type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM) patients and determine the clinical factors that are associated with health literacy scores including glycemic control.

Method: A cross-sectional study that included 249 adult Saudi patients with T2DM (99 males and 150 females) who visited the Diabetes Clinic of the Endocrine Center at King Fahad Medical City, Riyadh,  Saudi Arabia between September 2017 and January 2018. The short test of Functional Health Literacy in Adults (Arabic version) was used to classify patients into 3 levels of functional health literacy: inadequate, marginal, and adequate. Demographic characteristics were noted and glycosylated hemoglobin was assessed routinely. Regression analysis was carried out to determine whether health literacy is associated with glycemic control.

Results: Majority of the participants had adequate literacy rate (68.7%). The adequate group is significantly younger (48.4±12.8) than the marginal (54.2±13.3) and inadequate group (54.1±9.1). Females in the adequate group were significantly lesser (54.6%) than the marginal (66.7%) and inadequate (81.8%) groups. Being female has a lesser odds of having an adequate health literacy level (odds ratio [OR] -1.24, confidence interval [CI] -1.97-0.50; p=0.001). Body mass index was positively associated with adequate health literacy level, but the significance was modest (OR 0.04; CI 0.003-0.09; p=0.045).

Conclusion: Health literacy is high among Saudi T2DM patients and is not associated with glycemic control.




Saudi Med J 2019; Vol. 40 (7): 675-680
doi: 10.15537/smj.2019.7.24277

How to cite this article:
Mashi AH, Aleid D, Almutairi S, Khattab F, AlMuqawed A, Khan S, AlBanyan N, Brema I, Aljohani NJ. The association of health literacy with glycemic control in Saudi patients with type 2 diabetes. Saudi Med J 2014; 40 (7): 675-680. doi: 10.15537/smj.2019.7.24277. 


health literacy; diabetes; glycemic control

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