Risk accuracy of type 2 diabetes in middle aged adults: Associations with sociodemographic, clinical, psychological and behavioural factors.

24 Nov 2018

OBJECTIVE: To identify the proportion of individuals with an accurate perception of their risk of type 2 diabetes (T2D) prior to, immediately after and eight weeks after receiving a personalised risk estimate. Additionally, we aimed to explore what factors are associated with underestimation and overestimation immediately post-intervention. METHODS: Cohort study based on the data collected in the Diabetes Risk Communication Trial. We included 379 participants (mean age 48.9 (SD 7.4) years; 55.1% women) who received a genotypic or phenotypic risk estimate for T2D. RESULTS: While only 1.3% of participants perceived their risk accurately at baseline, this increased to 24.7% immediately after receiving a risk estimate and then dropped to 7.3% at eight weeks. Those who overestimated their risk at baseline continued to overestimate it, whereas those who underestimated their risk at baseline improved their risk accuracy. We did not identify any other characteristics associated with underestimation or overestimation immediately after receiving a risk estimate. CONCLUSION: Understanding a received risk estimate is challenging for most participants with many continuing to have inaccurate risk perception after receiving the estimate. PRACTICE IMPLICATIONS: Individuals who overestimate or underestimate their T2D risk before receiving risk information might require different approaches for altering their risk perception.