MediTeddi seems like a nice concept, but does it really work? Does it improve mental and physical well being? We performed a clinical study to answer that question.
Diabetes control is easily and definitively measured by a blood test called the HbA1c test. This test measures the patient's average blood sugar for the previous three months. If MediTeddi effectively changes health behaviors, we should see improvement of the average blood sugar in a three-month study.
We gave bears to 16 diabetic patients, 8 in the "control" group and 8 in the "active" group. Patients in each group came in to the office and received diabetes education, but the active group received a MediTeddi with instructions in use. We called members of each group every 2 weeks for three months. and encouraged them to continue working on their diabetes and answered any problems they might be having. Two people in the control group dropped out and one in the active group, either because of a move or lost to contact. Before and after the three-month trial, we also administered the Moriskey Medication Adherence Survey (MMA8), which measures the confidence level a person has in being able to take their medicines.
We feel our results were quite impressive. The average blood sugar reading improved in both groups, but by a much greater margin in the active group. That is the three-month average blood sugar dropped by 12 points in the control group and by 35 points in the active group. This corresponds to an expected 7% and 30% improvement in mortality over the ensuing 10 years, if the improvements were maintained. Those are better numbers than any single blood pressure or cholesterol pill!
In addition, and perhaps more important, the confidence level of patients in the active group skyrocketed. We applied the MMAS8 survey to patients at the beginning and end of the study. This test asks questions like "Do you ever feel hassled about sticking to your treatment plan?" "How often do you have difficulty remembering your medicine?". Like golf, a low score is better than a high score. At the beginning of the study, the average score was 3.75 in the control group and 4.4 in the active group. The average score did not change in the control group, but dropped to 3.0 in the active group, indicating significantly improved confidence in self-care.
Can you find a better way to boost self confidence in yourself or loved one?