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Am J Alzheimers Dis Other Demen. 2005 Jul-Aug;20(4):204-10.

A randomized, controlled study of an Alzheimer's caregiver skills training program.

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Department of Neurology, University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center at Dallas, Dallas, Texas, USA.


This study was an attempt to improve the quality of the relationship between dementia caregivers and their loved ones by decreasing the gap between caregivers' expectations and patients' actual functional abilities and by teaching supportive skills. Although a group of 49 caregiver-patient dyads were recruited, the outcome measures of only those dyads (47) that completed the week seven session were used for analysis. Half of the dyads were randomized to an intervention group and the other half to a waiting list. The intervention group (N = 24) completed a four-session caregiver training program in which caregivers first watched investigators administering to their loved ones the Texas Functional Living Scale and later progressed to helping their loved ones by appropriate cueing to perform the tasks involved. Comparisons were made between baseline scores, scores at seven weeks, and scores at the end of 17 weeks on the congruence between caregiver estimates and patients' actual performance on the Independent Living Scale and measures of cognition, function, preillness quality of relationship, caregiver mood, feeling of self-efficacy, and several other measures. We were not able to increase the congruence between caregiver estimates and patients' actual performance and found no change in any other measure. We didfind the expected relationship between depression and caregiver sense of self-efficacy.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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