Short Title:Can a couples' intervention reduce unmet needs and caregiver burden after brain injury?
Year, Volume, Issue, Page(s):19, 100, 12, E204
Objective: To examine the effectiveness of the Therapeutic Couples Intervention (TCI) on caregiver needs and burden after brain injury.
Research method: Individuals with brain injury and their intimate partners/caregivers (n = 75) participated in a 2-arm, parallel, randomized trial with a waitlist control. The TCI consisted of 5 2-hr sessions, with a sixth optional session for parents. The Family Needs Questionnaire-R (FNQ-R) and the Zarit Burden Interview (ZBI) were secondary outcome measures.
Results: After adjusting for baseline characteristics, caregivers in the TCI group demonstrated reduction in unmet needs for 5 of the 6 FNQ-R subscales, whereas those in the waitlist control group did not. ZBI scores improved significantly for TCI caregivers but not for controls. At the 3-month follow-up, benefits were maintained for the ZBI and 4 of the 6 FNQ-R subscales (Health Information, Emotional Support, Professional Support, and Community Support Network).
Conclusions: The present investigation provided evidence that, following brain injury, a structured couples intervention can reduce unmet needs and burden in caregivers. Future multicenter research examining long-term durability of treatment gains and specific characteristics of positive responders is warranted. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2019 APA, all rights reserved).