The Relationship of Quality of Life, Depression, and Caregiver Burden in Outpatients With Congestive Heart Failure

Authors

  • Peter J.D. Hooley BSc,

    1. From the Faculty of Medicine, Dalhousie University, Halifax, Nova Scotia1; and the Departments of Psychology2 and Medicine (Cardiology),3 Queen Elizabeth II Health Sciences Centre, Dalhousie University, Halifax, Nova Scotia
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  • 1 Gordon Butler PhD,

    1. From the Faculty of Medicine, Dalhousie University, Halifax, Nova Scotia1; and the Departments of Psychology2 and Medicine (Cardiology),3 Queen Elizabeth II Health Sciences Centre, Dalhousie University, Halifax, Nova Scotia
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  • and 2 Jonathan G. Howlett MD, FRCPC 3

    1. From the Faculty of Medicine, Dalhousie University, Halifax, Nova Scotia1; and the Departments of Psychology2 and Medicine (Cardiology),3 Queen Elizabeth II Health Sciences Centre, Dalhousie University, Halifax, Nova Scotia
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Jonathan Howlett, MD, FRCPC, New Halifax Infirmary, Room 6896, 1796 Summer Street, Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada B3H 3A7
E-mail: jghowlet@is.dal.ca

Abstract

Primary caregivers of patients with congestive heart failure withstand enormous burden, often sacrificing their own quality of life. The relationship between caregiver burden and depression and patient quality of life and depression in this setting is unknown. Fifty outpatients were prospectively administered the Minnesota Living with Heart Failure Questionnaire and Beck Depression Inventory II (BDI-II). Caregivers were administered the Zarit Caregiver Burden Interview and BDI-II. The mean quality of life score was 35, and 26% had a BDI-II score >10. The mean Zarit Caregiver Burden Interview score was 16. Minnesota Living with Heart Failure Questionnaire, BDI-II, and Zarit Caregiver Burden Interview scores were all associated with lower ejection fraction, need for hospitalization, increased number of medications, and comorbidities. Patient Minnesota Living with Heart Failure Questionnaire score correlated with patient BDI-II, caregiver BDI-II, and Zarit Caregiver Burden Interview scores. Caregiver burden score correlated with both caregiver BDI-II and patient BDI-II. Death or hospitalization at 6 months was associated with caregiver burden and depressive symptoms and with patient quality of life and depressive symptoms. Caregivers of patients with congestive heart failure experience high caregiver burden and prevalence of depressive symptoms, which are related to the patient disease burden.

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