Purpose of the Study: Taking care of admitted patients has usually been as much a responsibility of family members as that of hospital staff in India, but caregiver burden in caregivers of admitted patients has seldom been explored. The current study attempts to understand the prevailing situation in terms of burden of caregiving, among caregivers of neurosurgical inpatients of a tertiary care hospital, through identification and quantification of the same. All dimensions of the expected impact were recognized and explored among family caregivers. Design and Methods: This study followed a cross-sectional design and included adult caregivers of 100 neurosurgery inpatients from the neurosurgery ward of Post Graduate Institute of Medical Education and Research, Chandigarh. Both qualitative and quantitative data were collected and analyzed accordingly. Results: Univariate analysis showed most caregivers to be male young adults. More than 70% were immediate family members of the patients. Severe disturbance in the lives of caregivers was observed through thematic analysis of qualitative data, although less than 20% accepted caregiving to be a burden on them. Ninety percent of respondents mentioned disturbed sleep patterns, and average Caregiver Strain Index scores came out to be 11.65, depicting the overall strain levels to be moderate. Conclusions: Burden of caregiving in caregivers of neurosurgery patients is a real problem, with deep-rooted causes and far-reaching potential consequences. Efforts need to be made to take stock of this issue, for the benefit of both neurosurgery patients and their caregivers.
Using the Modified Caregiver Strain Index and face-to-face interviews, these Indian investigators examined the burden of caregiving experienced by family members caring for patients after neurosurgery.
Questions or comments about this article may be directed to Atul Sharma, MPH, at firstname.lastname@example.org. He is a PhD Scholar at School of Public Health, Post Graduate Institute of Medical Education and Research, Chandigarh, India.
Sukhpal Kaur, PhD, is a Lecturer at National Institute of Nursing Education, Post Graduate Institute of Medical Education and Research, Chandigarh, India.
Manoj Kumar Tewari, MS, MCh, is a Professor at Department of Neurosurgery, Post Graduate Institute of Medical Education and Research, Chandigarh, India.
Amarjit Singh, MD, is a Professor at School of Public Health, Post Graduate Institute of Medical Education and Research, Chandigarh, India.
The authors declare no conflicts of interest.