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Depress Anxiety. 2008;25(12):1020-7. doi: 10.1002/da.20431.

Emotional burden in caregivers of patients with obsessive-compulsive disorder.

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  • 1Department of Neurology, Psychology, and Psychiatry, Botucatu Medical School-UNESP, Botucatu (São Paulo), Brazil.



The objective of this study was to evaluate the emotional burden, psychological morbidity, and level of family accommodation in caregivers of obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) patients, according to sociodemographic and clinical factors.


Fifty Brazilian DSM-IV OCD patients and their caregivers were evaluated using the Family Accommodation Scale, the Zarit Burden Interview (ZBI), the Self-Report Questionnaire (caregivers), the Yale-Brown Obsessive-Compulsive Scale, and the Beck Depression Inventory (patients). Most caregivers (80%) were aged between 30 and 59 years and lived with the patient (88%).


Forty-two percent presented a common mental disorder and their mean ZBI score was 28.9. Family accommodation was moderate in 26% and severe or very severe in 24%. Caregivers' levels of psychological morbidity, accommodation, and emotional burden were associated with each other and with the severity of patient obsessive-compulsive and depressive symptoms.


The results suggest that caregivers of OCD patients have important levels of burden and psychological morbidity and should receive orientation and support to minimize this emotional impact.

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