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Effects of acute hypoglycemia on working memory and language processing in adults with and without type 1 diabetes

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    Rights statement: This is an author-created, uncopyedited electronic version of an article accepted for publication in Diabetes. The American Diabetes Association (ADA), publisher of Diabetes, is not responsible for any errors or omissions in this version of the manuscript or any version derived from it by third parties. The definitive publisher-authenticated version is available in an issue of Diabetes in print and online at http://care.diabetesjournals.org/content/early/2015/03/02/dc14-1657

    Accepted author manuscript, 535 KB, PDF-document

  • Download as Adobe PDF

    Rights statement: This is an author-created, uncopyedited electronic version of an article accepted for publication in Diabetes. The American Diabetes Association (ADA), publisher of Diabetes, is not responsible for any errors or omissions in this version of the manuscript or any version derived from it by third parties. The definitive publisher-authenticated version is available in an issue of Diabetes in print and online at http://care.diabetesjournals.org/content/early/2015/03/02/dc14-1657

    Accepted author manuscript, 91 KB, PDF-document

Original languageEnglish
JournalDiabetes Care
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 10 Mar 2015

Abstract

OBJECTIVE: To examine the effects of hypoglycemia on language processing in adults with and without type 1 diabetes.

RESEARCH DESIGN AND METHODS: Forty adults were studied (20 with type 1 diabetes and 20 healthy volunteers) using a hyperinsulinemic glucose clamp to lower blood glucose to 2.5 mmol/L (45 mg/dL) (hypoglycemia) for 60 min, or to maintain blood glucose at 4.5 mmol/L (81 mg/dL) (euglycemia), on separate occasions. Language tests were applied to assess the effects of hypoglycemia on the relationship between working memory and language (reading span), grammatical decoding (self-paced reading), and grammatical encoding (subject-verb agreement).

RESULTS: Hypoglycemia caused a significant deterioration in reading span (P < 0.001; η(2) = 0.37; Cohen d = 0.65) and a fall in correct responses (P = 0.005; η(2) = 0.19; Cohen d = 0.41). On the self-paced reading test, the reading time for the first sentence fragment increased during hypoglycemia (P = 0.039; η(2) = 0.11; Cohen d = 0.25). For the reading of the next fragment, hypoglycemia affected the healthy volunteer group more than the adults with type 1 diabetes (P = 0.03; η(2) = 0.12; Cohen d = 0.25). However, hypoglycemia did not significantly affect the number of errors in sentence comprehension or the time taken to answer questions. Hypoglycemia caused a deterioration of subject-verb agreement (correct responses: P = 0.011; η(2) = 0.159; Cohen d = 0.31).

CONCLUSIONS: Hypoglycemia caused a significant deterioration in reading span and in the accuracy of subject-verb agreement, both of which are practical aspects of language involved in its everyday use. Language processing is therefore impaired during moderate hypoglycemia.

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