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Effects of the Tailored Activity Program in Brazil (TAP-BR) for Persons With Dementia

A Randomized Pilot Trial

Novelli, Marcia M.P.C., PhD*,†; Machado, Styfany C.B., MSc*; Lima, Gabriela B., OTR*; Cantatore, Lais, OTR*; Sena, Barbara P., OTR*; Rodrigues, Renata S., OTR*; Rodrigues, Camila I.B., OTR*; Canon, Mariana B.F., MSc*; Piersol, Catherine V., PhD; Nitrini, Ricardo, PhD§; Yassuda, Monica S., PhD§; Gitlin, Laura N., PhD

Alzheimer Disease & Associated Disorders: October-December 2018 - Volume 32 - Issue 4 - p 339–345
doi: 10.1097/WAD.0000000000000256
Original Articles

Objectives: The objectives of this study were to evaluate the effects of the Tailored Activity Program—Brazilian version (TAP-BR), on behavioral symptoms and the quality of life (QOL) in persons with dementia, as well as on their caregivers, and on caregiver burden.

Materials and Methods: A 2-group randomized controlled trial with 30 dyads was conducted: the experimental group (n=15) received TAP-BR over 4 months, and a wait-list control group (n=15) received usual care. Dyads were recruited from the community of Santos City, Brazil.

Results: For persons with dementia, 50% were female individuals, the average age was 81.37 (±7.57), and the educational level was 9.97 (±5.32) years. For caregivers, 83.33% were female, the average age was 65.97 (±10.13), and the educational level was 12.10 (±4.44) years. At posttest, in comparison with the wait-list control group, experimental group caregivers reported greater reductions in number (P<0.001; Cohen d=0.93), frequency (P<0.001; Cohen d=1.12), and intensity (P<0.001; Cohen d=0.77) of the behavioral psychological symptoms of dementia, and caregiver distress (P<0.001; Cohen d=0.87). Caregivers also reported improvement in their own QOL (P<0.05; Cohen d=0.57) and that of the person with dementia (P<0.01; Cohen d=0.56); no differences were found in the ratings of QOL by the person with dementia themselves.

Conclusions: The results provide compelling evidence that the TAP-BR is an effective strategy to support dementia caregivers in other cultures (cross-validation).

*Inter Professional Nucleus of Aging Research and Attendance (NIPAE)

Management and Health Care Department, Federal University of Sao Paulo, Santos

§Neurology Department, University of São Paulo, São Paulo, Brazil

Department of Occupational Therapy, Thomas Jefferson University School of Health Professions

Drexel University, Philadelphia, PA

Supported by the São Paulo Research Foundation, process number 2013/02489-7.

The authors declare no conflicts of interest.

Reprints: Marcia M.P.C. Novelli, PhD, Management and Health Care Department, Federal University of Sao Paulo, Ave. Ana Costa, 95-NIPAE, Vila Mathias, Santos (SP) 11060-001, Brazil (e-mail:

Received August 23, 2017

Accepted February 12, 2018

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