Background: It is highly important for healthcare professionals to give discharge education to families to increase their knowledge of gastrostomy care and complications and to inform them about the correct behaviors. The purpose of the present descriptive pretraining and posttraining evaluation study was to investigate the effects of a standardized, evidence-based discharge education program prepared for children with gastrostomy tubes on the caregivers' knowledge, anxiety levels, and caregiving burden.
Methods: The primary caregivers of children with a gastrostomy tube (n = 30) were interviewed on the first day of the education program and the first week and third month after the program, and a pretest/posttest, the Zarit Caregiver Burden Scale and the State-Trait Anxiety Inventory were applied. Complications were determined by assessing the number of unplanned clinic visits and complications in the study group compared with the historical control group (historical comparison; n = 30).
Results: The study revealed that the knowledge levels of mothers increased in the first week and third month after training, and their caregiving burden and state-trait anxiety levels significantly decreased. Although some complications arising from the enteral nutrition process were observed, it was found that the complications were fewer, and the difference was statistically significant compared with the group that did not receive the standardized, evidence-based discharge education program.
Conclusion: The standardized education program should be recommended because caregivers managed the home care process more successfully, and the stress, anxiety, and difficulties experienced during homecare decreased.