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Year : 2020  |  Volume : 7  |  Issue : 1  |  Page : 13-18

Caregiver burden and quality of life in primary caregivers of schizophrenia patients: A cross-sectional study from a tertiary care hospital

Department of Psychiatry, Institute of Mental Health and Neurosciences, Kashmir, Srinagar, Jammu and Kashmir, India

Correspondence Address:
Dr. Bilal Ahmad Bhat
Institute of Mental Health and Neurosciences, Kashmir, Kathi Darwaza, Srinagar - 190 003, Jammu and Kashmir
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/ami.ami_21_20

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Background: With a shift in treatment and care of schizophrenia over the years, with more and more patients being treated on an outpatient basis and cared in community, caregivers experience distress in psychological and emotional health, have reduced social contact, have financial difficulties, have low life satisfaction, and have poor mental and physical health. Aims: The aim is to understand the quality of life (QoL) and the extent of burden perceived by caregivers while caregiving a family member with a diagnosis of schizophrenia. Materials and Methods: This was a cross-sectional study. A total of 75 schizophrenia patients and their caregivers were included in this study. Standardized instruments were administered to patients as well as to caregivers to collect data regarding symptomatology in patients and perceived burden and QoL in their caregivers. Results: The mean age of caregivers was 40.49 ± 12.65 years, and of patients was 37.45 ± 9.55. The mean score on the Schizophrenia Caregiver Quality of Life (S-CGQoL) questionnaire was 44.8 ± 8.67. 76% of caregivers had a score <50. QoL was significantly correlated with burden on caregivers (r = −0.478; P = 0.0001) and duration of illness of patients (r = 0.243; P = 0.014). The mean score on Zarit Burden Interview (ZBI) was 38.28% ±11.19. 64% of caregivers perceived mild-to-moderate burden. Caregivers burden was correlated with manifestation of negative symptoms in patients (r = 0.287; P = 0.013). Negative symptom scores significantly predicted the burden perceived by caregivers. Conclusion: Caregivers of schizophrenia patients experience a considerable level of burden which with significant correlations between negative symptoms in patients and scores on ZBI. Negative symptoms in patients were the only predictor of the burden on caregivers. Low QoL with a score of <50 on S-CGQoL was present in two-thirds of caregivers. QoL was related positively to the duration of illness and negatively to the burden on caregivers.

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