Original ArticlesQuality of Life and Burden of Spouses of Alzheimer Disease PatientsSchölzel-Dorenbos, Carla J. M. MD* †; Draskovic, Irena PhD† ‡; Vernooij-Dassen, Myrra J. PhD† ‡; Olde Rikkert, Marcel G. M. MD, PhD†Author Information *Memory Clinic Slingeland Hospital Doetinchem †Alzheimer Centre Nijmegen ‡Centre for Quality of Care Research, University Medical Centre Nijmegen, The Netherlands Sources of support: none. Conflict of interest: none. Authors' contributions: Carla J. M. Schölzel-Dorenbos designed the study, carried out the data collection, and designed and wrote the drafts of the manuscript. Irena Draskovic contributed significantly to the analysis of the data and the manuscript. Myrra J. Vernooij-Dassen contributed to the manuscript. Marcel G. M. Olde Rikkert contributed significantly to the analysis of the data and the construction of the manuscript. All authors read and approved the final manuscript and have agreed to be listed as authors. The abstract of the paper has been presented as a poster (P2-107) at the IPA 2007 Osaka Silver Congress, Osaka/Japan. Reprints: Carla J. M. Schölzel-Dorenbos, MD, Memory Clinic Slingeland Hospital/Alzheimer Centre Nijmegen, University Medical Centre Nijmegen, Kruisbergseweg 25, 7009 BL Doetinchem, The Netherlands (e-mail: [email protected]). Received for publication March 30, 2008; accepted September 11, 2008 Alzheimer Disease & Associated Disorders: April 2009 - Volume 23 - Issue 2 - p 171-177 doi: 10.1097/WAD.0b013e318190a260 Buy Metrics Abstract The objective of the study was to explore, in a sample of spouses of mild-to-moderate Alzheimer disease patients, predictors of quality of life (QoL) by rating QoL and burden. The authors assessed 97 spouses in a cross-sectional study with the Schedule for the Evaluation of Individual Quality of Life (SEIQoL), Self-Rated Burden scale (SRB), self-perceived stress scale (EDIZ; Ervaren Druk door Informele Zorg/Self-Perceived Pressure from Informal Care), and Zarit Burden Interview (ZBI). Patient cognition was rated with the Mini-Mental State Examination (MMSE). Factors best predicting QoL were analyzed with multiple regression analysis. Eighty-seven (53% male, mean 72 y) fulfilled the SEIQoL internal reliability criteria, and had a mean SEIQoL score of 68.6±14.8. Most important QoL domains were condition of patient (31%) and marriage (26%). Caregiver burden scores on SRB, Ervaren Druk door Informele, Zorg, and ZBI were 44.1±23.5 (n=67), 4.9±2.2 (n=53), and 13.1±6.2 (n=53), respectively. Mean patient MMSE score (0 to 30) was 20.3±4.2. Spouses experienced lower QoL than Alzheimer disease patients and healthy elderly (historical controls), and perceived moderate levels of burden. Patient cognition is a significant predictor of caregiver QoL. Burden, measured by ZBI, is significantly negatively correlated with SEIQoL. The results underline the importance of implementing health services known to improve QoL and alleviate burden, and to explore new effective interventions. © 2009 Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, Inc.