The Burden of Family Caring for Patients with Brain and Spinal Cord Tumors

Introduction: The caregiving and the perceiving burden of family caregivers of patients with CNS tumors had been shown to adversely affect their physical and psychological well-being. Aim: The aim of this study was to investigate the caregiver's burden and psychological condition from patient care undergoing surgery for brain and spinal tumors. Material and Method: This is a quantitative, descriptive, comparative study. The convenience sample of the study consisted of 97 pairs of patients and their respective family caregivers. Demographics and clinical data were collected from patients, while demographics were collected from caregivers. In addition, caregivers’ anxiety, depression and burden levels were estimated with the Hospital Anxiety and Depression Scale (HADS) and the Bakas Caregiving Outcomes Scale (BCOS). Results: The majority of patients and caregivers were women (53.6% and 71.1% respectively), aged 54.1±16.7 and 46.2±13.3 years, respectively. In total, 61 (62.9%) patients suffering from a brain tumor and 36 (37.1%) from a spine tumor. 42.3% of patients were in a wheelchair. The mean Karnofsky score was 48.8 ± 15.8. Written instructions were given to 51.5% of caregivers. The mean anxiety and depression score was 13.1±3.5 and 11.9±4.2, respectively. The mean total score on the BCOS scale was 42.9±12.2. Caregivers who provided care to patients confined to bed (p=0.023, p=0.002), those dependent (p=0.027, p=0.003) and those unmarried (p=0.046 και p=0.009) had significantly higher levels of anxiety and depression. Caregivers who had been given written instructions had significantly lower anxiety (p=0.03) and burden levels (p=0.042). Conclusions: Caregivers of patients with CNS tumor should be provided with psychological support, written instructions and training in order to help them better adapt to the new roles of their life.

Category: Volume 56, N 4
Hits: 610 Hits
Created Date: 15-12-2017
Authors: Garyfalia Fyseki , Emmanuel Hatzithakis , Chrisoula Tsiou , Michael Kourakos , Anna Kavga , Ourania Govina