The determinants of informal caregivers' burden in the care of frail older persons: a dynamic and role-related perspective

TitleThe determinants of informal caregivers' burden in the care of frail older persons: a dynamic and role-related perspective
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2017
AuthorsJ. Mello DAlmeida, Macq J., Van Durme T., Ces S., Spruytte N., Van Audenhove C., Declercq A.
JournalAging Ment Health
Date PublishedAug
ISBN Number1360-7863
Accession Number27054404
Keywords*aging, *Cost of Illness, *Frail Elderly/statistics & numerical data, Adult Children/*psychology/statistics & numerical data, Aged, Aged, 80 and over, Caregivers/*psychology/statistics & numerical data, caregiving and interventions, Cross-Sectional Studies, Female, Humans, Male, mental health, Middle Aged, physical health measures, quantitative methods and statistics, Spouses/*psychology/statistics & numerical data, Stress, Psychological/epidemiology/*psychology, stress/burden

Research into informal caregivers' burden does not distinguish between different stages of impairment. This study explored the determinants of burden from an in-depth perspective in order to identify which determinants apply to which phases of impairment. METHODS: This was a cross-sectional study including frail older persons aged 65 and above. Instruments used were the interRAI Home Care, the Zarit-12 interview and an ad hoc economic questionnaire. A combination of variables from the Stress Process Model and Role Theory and a sub-group analysis enabled refined multivariate logistic analyses. RESULTS: The study population consisted of 4175 older persons (average age: 81.4 +/- 6.8, 67.8% female) and their informal caregivers. About 57% of them perceived burden. Depressive symptoms, behavioral problems, IADL impairment, previous admissions to nursing homes and risk of falls yielded significant odds ratios in relation to informal caregivers' burden for the whole sample. These determinants were taken from the Stress Process Model. When the population was stratified according to impairment, some factors were only significant for the population with severe impairment (behavioral problems OR:2.50; previous admissions to nursing homes OR:2.02) and not for the population with mild or moderate impairment. The informal caregiver being an adult child, which is a determinant from Role Theory, and cohabitation showed significant associations with burden in all strata. CONCLUSION: Determinants of informal caregivers' burden varied according to stages of impairment. The results of this study can help professional caregivers gain a greater insight into which informal caregivers are most susceptible to perceive burden. ABBREVIATIONS: NIHDI: National Institute for Health and Disability Insurance; ZBI12: Zarit Burden Interview - 12 items; InterRAI HC: interRAI Home Care instrument; ADL: Activities of Daily Living; ADLH: interRAI Activities of Daily Living Hierarchy scale; IADL: Instrumental Activities of Daily Living; IADLP: InterRAI Instrumental Activities of Daily Living Performance scale; CPS2: InterRAI Cognitive Performance scale 2; DRS: InterRAI Depression Rating scale.


Short TitleAging & mental healthAging & mental health
Alternate JournalAging & mental health