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Objective: To determine the profile of caregivers for disability old patients in home care and to investigate the psychosocial characteristics of caregivers.

Materials and methods: A pilot case-control study was performed in the state of Valle del Cauca, Colombia during 2003-2004. Family function (family APGAR), anxiety and depression (Goldberg Scale), morbidity, and the prevalence of the syndrome of family caregivers (Zarit Scale) were assessed.

Results: 102 families from low and middle socioeconomic status were studied. Median disability average was 4 years (range 1-60 years). A high proportion of depression (81.3% vs. 53.9%, p< 0.01), anxiety (85.2% vs. 45%, p< 0.001), and family dysfunction (26.5% vs. 10.8%) (p=0.004) was observed in caregivers; 48 (47%) caregivers had the syndrome and had high levels of anxiety (96%, p=0.01) as well as high levels of depression (100%, p< 0.0001); 87 (85.3%) caregivers have had different pathologies in the precedent year in comparison with 65 (63.7%) not caregivers (p=0.0004).

Conclussion: A caregivers syndrome was observed in 48 (47%) family members. The caregivers had high levels of anxiety, depression and family dysfunction associated to the syndrome and its morbidity. This study identified the caregivers of old disability people as a vulnerable group with high preventive and therapeutic necessities.

Eliana Dueñas, Universidad del Valle

Profesora Auxiliar, Departamento de Medicina Familiar, Escuela de Medicina, Facultad de Salud, Universidad del Valle, Cali, Colombia.

María Anggeline Martínez, Universidad del Valle

Médico Familiar, Departamento de Medicina Familiar, Escuela de Medicina, Facultad de Salud, Universidad del Valle, Cali, Colombia.

Benjamín Morales, Universidad del Cauca

Profesor Auxiliar, Departamento de Medicina Social, Universidad del Cauca, Popayán, Colombia.

Claudia Muñoz, Universidad del Valle

Profesora Auxiliar, Departamento de Medicina Familiar, Escuela de Medicina, Facultad de Salud, Universidad del Valle, Cali, Colombia.

Ana Sofía Viáfara, Universidad del Valle

Médico Familiar, Departamento de Medicina Familiar, Escuela de Medicina, Facultad de Salud, Universidad del Valle, Cali, Colombia.

Julián A. Herrera, Universidad del Valle

Profesor Titular y Emérito, Departamento de Medicina Familiar, Escuela de Medicina, Facultad de Salud, Universidad del Valle, Cali, Colombia.
Dueñas, E., Martínez, M. A., Morales, B., Muñoz, C., Viáfara, A. S., & Herrera, J. A. (2024). Syndrome of the caregiver in disability old patients and the psychosocial implications. Valle del Cauca, Colombia 2003-2004. Colombia Medica, 37(2.Supl.1), 31–38. https://doi.org/10.25100/cm.v37i2.Supl.1.435

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