0
Summaries for Patients |

Can Providing Support to Dementia Caregivers Improve Their Quality of Life? FREE

[+] Article and Author Information

The summary below is from the full report titled “Enhancing the Quality of Life of Dementia Caregivers from Different Ethnic or Racial Groups. A Randomized, Controlled Trial.” It is in the 21 November 2006 issue of Annals of Internal Medicine (volume 145, pages 727-738). The authors are S.H. Belle, L. Burgio, R. Burns, D. Coon, S.J. Czaja, D. Gallagher-Thompson, L.N. Gitlin, J. Klinger, K.M. Koepke, C.C. Lee, J. Martindale-Adams, L. Nichols, R. Schulz, S. Stahl, A. Stevens, L. Winter, and S. Zhang, for the Resources for Enhancing Alzheimer's Caregiver Health (REACH) II Investigators.


Ann Intern Med. 2006;145(10):I-39. doi:10.7326/0003-4819-145-10-200611210-00001
Text Size: A A A

What is the problem and what is known about it so far?

Dementia is a progressive decline in thinking, memory, and the ability to learn. People with dementia need help with basic activities, such as cooking and bathing. Most also eventually need around-the-clock supervision from caregivers. Because the need becomes constant, many caregivers become depressed and exhausted. Support helps the depression and exhaustion. It can lead to improvement in dementia symptoms and can also delay the caregiver's need to send the person with dementia to a nursing home. However, most caregivers do not receive the support that they need.

Why did the researchers do this particular study?

To develop and test a way to provide support to dementia caregivers.

Who was studied?

642 dementia caregivers: 212 were Hispanic, 219 were white, and 211 were black.

How was the study done?

The researchers randomly assigned caregivers to receive written educational materials about dementia or to receive intensive support. Types of support included help with depression and exhaustion and with managing difficult behaviors of the person with dementia. After 6 months, the researchers measured and compared the quality of the lives of the caregivers in the 2 groups. They also compared the numbers of people with dementia who were sent to nursing homes.

What did the researchers find?

The researchers found that the quality of the lives of the caregivers improved more with intensive support than with just educational materials. The effect did not differ by caregiver race. However, Hispanic and white caregivers and black caregivers who were married to the person they were caring for seemed especially likely to benefit. The number of people with dementia who were sent to nursing homes did not differ between the groups.

What were the limitations of the study?

The study lasted only 6 months. The findings might have been different if the caregivers had received more support over a longer time. Also, not all ethnicities were included in the study. Those that were included people with very different backgrounds and needs.

What are the implications of the study?

Provision of intensive support to caregivers for 6 months can improve their quality of life. It did not reduce the need to send the people they were caring for to nursing homes. These effects did not differ by caregiver race or ethnicity.

Figures

Tables

References

Letters

NOTE:
Citing articles are presented as examples only. In non-demo SCM6 implementation, integration with CrossRef’s "Cited By" API will populate this tab (http://www.crossref.org/citedby.html).

Comments

Submit a Comment
Submit a Comment

Summary for Patients

Clinical Slide Sets

Terms of Use

The In the Clinic® slide sets are owned and copyrighted by the American College of Physicians (ACP). All text, graphics, trademarks, and other intellectual property incorporated into the slide sets remain the sole and exclusive property of the ACP. The slide sets may be used only by the person who downloads or purchases them and only for the purpose of presenting them during not-for-profit educational activities. Users may incorporate the entire slide set or selected individual slides into their own teaching presentations but may not alter the content of the slides in any way or remove the ACP copyright notice. Users may make print copies for use as hand-outs for the audience the user is personally addressing but may not otherwise reproduce or distribute the slides by any means or media, including but not limited to sending them as e-mail attachments, posting them on Internet or Intranet sites, publishing them in meeting proceedings, or making them available for sale or distribution in any unauthorized form, without the express written permission of the ACP. Unauthorized use of the In the Clinic slide sets will constitute copyright infringement.

Toolkit

Want to Subscribe?

Learn more about subscription options

Advertisement
Related Articles
Related Point of Care
Topic Collections
PubMed Articles
How are we going to live with Alzheimer's disease? Health Aff (Millwood) 2014;33(4):541-6.
Problem-Solving Therapy in the Elderly. Curr Treat Options Psychiatry 2014;1(1):15-26.

Want to Subscribe?

Learn more about subscription options

Forgot your password?
Enter your username and email address. We'll send you a reminder to the email address on record.
(Required)
(Required)