Currently Viewing:
Newsroom
Currently Reading
Depression Among Cancer Caregivers Can Lead to Health Problems
July 05, 2017 – AJMC Staff
Immuno-Oncology Drug, AM0010, Is Effective in Treating Advanced Pancreatic Cancer
July 04, 2017 – Alison Rodriguez
New Flow Cytometry-Based Test Approved for Certain Leukemias and Lymphomas
July 03, 2017 – Surabhi Dangi-Garimella, PhD
This Week in Managed Care: June 30, 2017
June 30, 2017
Most Read News (So Far) of 2017
June 30, 2017 – Laura Joszt
Novel Antibody May Restore Immune Response to Rituximab for CLL
June 29, 2017 – Christina Mattina
Evidence-Based Oncology™ Looks at Increasing Use of Palliative Care
June 29, 2017
Radiotherapy Reduces Risk of Breast Cancer Mortality, Increases Risks of Other Cancers
June 29, 2017 – Alison Rodriguez
Hypofractionated Radiation Proves Effective as Prostate Cancer Therapy
June 28, 2017 – Christina Mattina

Depression Among Cancer Caregivers Can Lead to Health Problems

AJMC Staff
A collaborative research study, based on survey results gathered by the American Cancer Society, has found a correlation between depressive symptoms in cancer caregivers and a decline in their physical health.
A collaborative research study among researchers at the American Cancer Society, Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center (MSKCC), and the University of Miami has found a correlation between depressive symptoms in cancer caregivers and a decline in their physical health.

The study included data from 664 caregivers (mean age, 53.2 years) across the nation who were classified based on the number of years after their family members’ cancer diagnosis: 2 years (T1), 5 years (T2), and 8 years (T3). These were survey results from the American Cancer Society’s National Quality of Life Survey for Caregivers. The study outcome was physical health of the caregiver, which was assessed from T1 through T3. Self-reporting predictors at T1 included demographics (age, sex, education, income, relationship to patient, and employment status), patient cancer severity, and caregiver psychosocial factors (caregiving stress, caregiving esteem, social support, and depressive symptoms).

While in the early years (T1) caregivers reported slightly better physical health than the control population, this advantage declined over 6 years. A significant determinant of a caregiver’s initial physical health included demographic factors, patient cancer severity, and T1 caregiving stress (P ≤ .03). However, while depressive symptoms were unrelated to the caregiver’s initial physical health, they predicted a decline in health (P = .004).

“Adverse effects of depression on physical health have been well-documented in the general population,” the authors write. “These findings extend evidence to the cancer caregiving context, known to have many psychosocial stressors and challenges, and highlight the importance of depression specifically to caregivers’ premature physical health decline.”

“Identifying caregivers in need, and connecting these caregivers to effective and accessible psychosocial services, are imperative next steps to improve comprehensive care for families facing cancer,” said study author Kelly M. Shaffer, PhD, of MSKCC.

 
Copyright AJMC 2006-2020 Clinical Care Targeted Communications Group, LLC. All Rights Reserved.
x
Welcome the the new and improved AJMC.com, the premier managed market network. Tell us about yourself so that we can serve you better.
Sign Up