Indian Journal of PsychiatryIndian Journal of Psychiatry
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Year : 2019  |  Volume : 61  |  Issue : 3  |  Page : 277-282

Depression in caregivers of patients with breast cancer: A cross-sectional study from a cancer research center in South India

1 Department of Psychiatry, MOSC Medical College, Kolenchery, Ernakulam, Kerala, India
2 Department of Psychiatry, Institute for Mind and Brain, Thrissur, Kerala, India

Correspondence Address:
Dr. Sreeja Sahadevan
Department of Psychiatry, MOSC Medical College, Kolenchery, Ernakulam - 682 311, Kerala
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/psychiatry.IndianJPsychiatry_46_18

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Context: Existing literature suggests an alarming rate of depression in cancer caregivers, which is comparable to or even higher than in patients themselves. There are no studies on depression among caregivers of breast cancer from India. Aims: The aim is to study the prevalence and determinants of depression in caregivers of breast cancer. Settings and Design: This is a cross-sectional study of 384 patient-caregiver dyads at a cancer research center in South India. Materials and Methods: Based on the International Classification of Diseases, 10th Revision Diagnostic Criteria for Research depression was diagnosed, and the severity of depression was assessed using the Hamilton rating scale for depression. A semi-structured pro forma was used to collect the clinical data under patient, caregivers, and care characteristics. Results: The prevalence of depression in caregivers was 52.5%. Among them, 35% had mild depression, 16% had moderate depression, and 2% had severe depression. Spousal caregivers, those who resided with the patient, those providing financial support and those with noncaring domestic responsibilities appeared as vulnerable determinants in univariate analysis. However, multivariate analysis did not support the same. Conclusion: Depression is common among caregivers of patients with breast cancer. There is a need for focused interventions for this group, which may improve the outcome of the patient as well.



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