Medline ® Abstracts for References 19,20
of 'Screening for depression in adults'
Living with a depressed spouse.
Benazon NR, Coyne JC
J Fam Psychol. 2000 Mar;14(1):71-9.
The depressed mood and specific burdens experienced by spouses of patients in treatment for depression were examined. Forty-nine wife-depressed couples and 30 husband-depressed couples were administered the Structured Clinical Interview for DSM-IV (M. B. First, R. L. Spitzer, M. Gibbon,&J. B. W. Williams, 1995), and spouses completed measures of depressed mood and burden. Overall, spouses living with a depressed patient reported significantly more depressed mood than general population norms and numerous specific burdens. Regression analyses showed that these burdens as well as gender of the spouse accounted for the spouses' depressed mood that would otherwise be attributed to mood contagion. It is suggested that as an alternative to an exclusive therapeutic focus on patient outcomes, attention might profitably be directed to the distress and burden experienced by spouses.
Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Neurosciences, Wayne State University School of Medicine, Detroit, Michigan 48201, USA. firstname.lastname@example.org
Caring and its burdens. A study of the spouses of depressed patients.
Fadden G, Bebbington P, Kuipers L
Br J Psychiatry. 1987 Nov;151:660-7.
Spouses of 24 patients suffering from persistent depression were interviewed to find out how they were affected by the patient's illness. These effects were marked, although mainly endured without complaint, and included restrictions in social and leisure activities, a fall in family income, and a considerable strain on marital relationships. Some of the behaviour shown by patients was hard to bear, and 'negative' symptoms such as misery, withdrawal, and worrying commonly caused problems. Few relatives, however, know how to deal with difficult behaviour. Despite this, the majority remained committed to staying with the patient. Spouses had a variety of complaints about the way they were handled by hospital staff, particularly about being deprived of information and advice. These results have considerable implications for the way in which relatives should be dealt with as part of the overall management of persistent depression.
St Columba's Hospital, Sligo.