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Contradiction, Similarity, and Uncovered Factors of Depression among Post-Stroke Patients Family-Caregivers

Background: Family caregivers of post-stroke patients face many challenges that may result in depressive symptoms and ineffective care performance. This generates a negative correlation spiral related to the quality of life for both family caregivers and patients. Examining factors related to depressive symptoms among family caregivers is necessary to develop effective care and education programs. Objective: The study aimed to identify the contradictions, similarity, and uncovered factors related to depressive symptoms scores among family caregivers through comparison of examined variables. Methodology: A literature search from December 1988 to March 2016 was carried out using CINAHL and PubMed databases. The initial search found 84 articles. After eliminating duplicates and screening based on inclusion and exclusion criteria, 16 articles were reviewed. Results: Three main factors found were: (1) contradictory factors which included gender, family relationship status, and depressive symptoms scores between caregivers and stroke patients, (2) Similarity factors which included race, age, caregiving burden of family caregivers, functional status of stroke patient, and (3) uncovered factors which included the role of nurses, spiritual value, knowledge of depressive symptoms, conducive living environment, and types of family structure. Conclusions: The contradictions of findings and uncovered factors observed be used as evidence for subsequent investigations. Gender, the different roles of family, relationship, and the severity of stroke should be considered in identifying depressive symptoms among family caregivers in the early stages during hospitalization. Nurses have an important role to identify depressive symptoms because of their active role and greater interaction with family caregivers compared with other health professionals. Implication for nursing and health policy: The study findings highlights the important factors to consider and use in developing health policy related to family education program and early screening for depressive symptoms to reduce and prevent depressive symptoms among family caregivers.

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Type of Reference
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Journal article
Professor Despina Sapountzi-Krepia
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Journal Titles
International Journal of Caring Sciences
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