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Burden on the families of patients with schizophrenia: results of the BIOMED I study.

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Department of Psychiatry, University of Naples, SUN, Italy.


The burden, the coping strategies and the social network of a sample of 236 relatives of patients with schizophrenia, living in five European countries, were explored by well-validated assessment instruments. In all centres, relatives experienced higher levels of burden when they had poor coping resources and reduced social support. Relatives in Mediterranean centres, who reported lower levels of social support, were more resigned, and more often used spiritual help as a coping strategy. These data indicate that family burden and coping strategies can be influenced by cultural factors and suggest that family interventions should have also a social focus, aiming to increase the family social network and to reduce stigma.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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