Effect of diabetes on caregiver burden in an observational study of individuals with Alzheimer’s disease

Lebrec, Jeremie and Ascher-Svanum, Haya and Chen, Yun-Fei and Reed, Catherine and Kahle-Wrobleski, Kristin and Hake, Ann Marie and Raskin, Joel and Naderali, Ebrahim and Schuster, Dara and Heine, Robert J. and Kendall, David M. (2016) Effect of diabetes on caregiver burden in an observational study of individuals with Alzheimer’s disease. BMC Geriatrics, 16 (93). ISSN 1471-2318


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The burden on caregivers of patients with Alzheimer’s disease (AD) is associated with the patient’s functional status and may also be influenced by chronic comorbid medical conditions, such as diabetes. This post-hoc exploratory analysis assessed whether comorbid diabetes in patients with AD affects caregiver burden, and whether caregivers with diabetes experience greater burden than caregivers without diabetes. Caregiver and patient healthcare resource use (HCRU) were also assessed.

Baseline data from the GERAS observational study of patients with AD and their caregivers (both n = 1495) in France, Germany and the UK were analyzed.

Caregiver burden was assessed using the Zarit Burden Interview (ZBI). Caregiver time on activities of daily living (ADL: basic ADL; instrumental ADL, iADL) and supervision (hours/month), and caregiver and patient HCRU (outpatient visits, emergency room visits, nights hospitalized) were assessed using the Resource Utilization in Dementia instrument for the month before the baseline visit. Regression analyses were adjusted for relevant covariates. Time on supervision and basic ADL was analyzed using zero-inflated negative binomial regression.
Caregivers of patients with diabetes (n = 188) were younger and more likely to be female (both p < 0.05), compared with caregivers of patients without diabetes (n = 1307). Analyses showed caregivers of patients with diabetes spent significantly more time on iADL (+16 %; p = 0.03; increases were also observed for basic ADL and total caregiver time but did not reach statistical significance) and had a trend towards increased ZBI score. Patients with diabetes had a 63 % increase in the odds of requiring supervision versus those without diabetes (p = 0.01). Caregiver and patient HCRU did not differ according to patient diabetes.

Caregivers with diabetes (n = 127) did not differ from those without diabetes (n = 1367) regarding burden/time, but caregivers with diabetes had a 91 % increase in the odds of having outpatient visits (p = 0.01).

This cross-sectional analysis found caregiver time on iADL and supervision was higher for caregivers of patients with AD and diabetes versus without diabetes, while HCRU was unaffected by patient diabetes. Longitudinal analyses assessing change in caregiver burden over time by patient diabetes status may help clarify the cumulative impact of diabetes and AD dementia on caregiver burden.

Item Type: Article
Additional Information and Comments: © 2016 Lebrec et al. Open Access This article is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/), which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided you give appropriate credit to the original author(s) and the source, provide a link to the Creative Commons license, and indicate if changes were made. The Creative Commons Public Domain Dedication waiver (http://creativecommons.org/publicdomain/zero/1.0/) applies to the data made available in this article, unless otherwise stated.
Keywords: Caregiver burden Activities of daily living Supervision Healthcare resource use Alzheimer’s disease Diabetes Observational study
Faculty / Department: Faculty of Science > School of Health Sciences
Depositing User: Ebrahim Naderali
Date Deposited: 11 May 2016 08:37
Last Modified: 01 Dec 2017 13:44
URI: https://hira.hope.ac.uk/id/eprint/1334

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