Are there gender, racial or relationship differences in caregiver task difficulty, depressive symptoms and life changes among stroke family caregivers?

Nenette M. Jessup, Tamilyn Bakas, Susan M. McLennon, Michael T. Weaver

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

15 Scopus citations

Abstract

Objective: To examine differences in caregiver perceptions of task difficulty, depressive symptoms and life changes based on caregiver characteristics of gender, race and type of relationship to the person with stroke.

Methods: A sample of 243 stroke caregivers (females n = 191; males n = 52; non-African Americans n = 184; African Americans n = 59; non-spouses n = 127; spouses n = 116) were interviewed by telephone within 8 weeks of the survivor's discharge to home. Measures included the Oberst Caregiving Burden Scale (OCBS) for task difficulty, Patient Health Questionnaire (PHQ-9) for depressive symptoms and Bakas Caregiving Outcomes Scale (BCOS) for life changes. Three general linear models computed differences in OCBS, PHQ9 and OCBS scores.

Results: Significant differences were found on the OCBS for females (p < 0.001) and African American spouses (p < 0.048); on the PHQ9 for females (p < 0.001), non-African Americans (p = 0.047), spouses (p = 0.003) and African-American spouses (p = 0.010); and on the BCOS for females (p = 0.008) and non-African Americans (p = 0.033).

Conclusions: Findings suggest that female and non-African American stroke caregivers are relatively more likely to experience task difficulty, depressive symptoms and negative life changes as a result of providing care. African American spouses were also at risk. Tailoring interventions based on caregivers' characteristics may improve outcomes.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)17-24
Number of pages8
JournalBrain Injury
Volume29
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 1 2015

Keywords

  • Burden
  • Caregiver
  • Demographics
  • Depressive symptoms
  • Life changes
  • Stroke

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Clinical Neurology
  • Arts and Humanities (miscellaneous)
  • Developmental and Educational Psychology

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