Journal:ARCHIVES OF PHYSICAL MEDICINE AND REHABILITATION
Year, Volume, Issue, Page(s):09, 90, 6, 939-46
Objective: To describe frequency and magnitude of caregivers' emotional distress and life satisfaction using standardized assessment procedures; compare distress levels among spouses, parents, and other caregivers; and identify risk factors. Design: Prospective collaborative cohort study. Setting: Six Traumatic Brain lnjury Model System Centers providing neuroU'auma care, rehabilitation, and outpatient follow-up. Participants: Caregivers (N=273) of patients who were I, 2, or 5 years postinjmy.
Interventions: Acute neurotrauma care, inpatient interdisciplinary brain injury rehabilitation, and postacute services. Main Outcome Measure: Btief Symptom Inventory-I 8 Depression. Anxiety, and Somatic dimensions. Results: Levels of Depression, Anxiety, and Somatic symptoms were equally prevalent, with 1 in 5 caregivers sCOling above the cutoff in each area. The propOltion of participants with I, 2, and 3 elevations was l7.9%, 5.5%, and 10.6%, respectively.Conversely, approximately two thirds (65.9%) had no scores exceeding cutoffs. Distress levels among spouses, parents, and other caregivers were comparable. Higher caregiver distress was associated with caring for survivors who had worse functional status, received more supervision, were less satisfied with life, and used alcohol excessively. Conclusions: Depression, Anxiety, and Somatic symptoms are common among caregivers. Findings substantiate the importance of clinical care systems addressing the needs of caregivers in the long term as well as survivors.
Key Words: Brain injuries; Caregivers; Family; Rehabilitation; Stress, psychological.