A brief measure of predeath grief in dementia caregivers: The Caregiver Grief Questionnaire

Sheung-Tak CHENG, Duan Yang MA, Linda C. W. LAM

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Abstract

Objective: The study of predeath grief is hampered by measures that are often lengthy and not clearly differentiated from other caregiving outcomes, most notably burden. We aimed to validate a new 11-item Caregiver Grief Questionnaire (CGQ) assessing two dimensions of predeath grief, namely relational deprivation and emotional pain.
Design: Cross-sectional survey.
Setting: Community and psychogeriatric clinics.
Participants: 173 Alzheimer (AD) caregivers who cared for relatives with different degrees of severity (63 mild, 60 moderate, and 50 severe).
Measurements: Besides the CGQ, measures of caregiver burden and depressive symptoms, and care-recipients' neuropsychiatric symptoms and functional impairment were assessed.
Results: Confirmatory factor analysis supported the hypothesized 2-factor over the 1-factor model, and both subscales were only moderately correlated with burden. Two-week test-retest reliabilities were excellent. Caregivers for mild AD reported less grief than those caring for more severe relatives. Z tests revealed significantly different correlational patterns for the two dimensions, with emotional pain more related to global burden and depressive symptoms, and relational deprivation more related to care-recipients' functional impairment. Both dimensions were mildly correlated with neuropsychiatric symptoms (especially disruptive behaviors and psychotic symptoms) of the care-recipient.
Conclusions: Results supported the reliability and validity of the two-dimensional measure of predeath grief. As a brief measure, it can be readily added to research instruments to facilitate study of this important phenomenon along with other caregiving outcomes. Copyright © 2019 International Psychogeriatric Association.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1099-1107
JournalInternational Psychogeriatrics
Volume31
Issue number8
Early online dateApr 2019
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Aug 2019

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Grief
Caregivers
Dementia
Geriatric Psychiatry
Reproducibility of Results
Depression
Pain
Statistical Factor Analysis
Surveys and Questionnaires
Cross-Sectional Studies
Research

Citation

Cheng, S.-T., Ma, D. Y., & Lam, L. C. W. (2019). A brief measure of predeath grief in dementia caregivers: The Caregiver Grief Questionnaire. International Psychogeriatrics, 31(8), 1099-1107. doi: 10.1017/S1041610219000309

Keywords

  • Dementia
  • Alzheimer's disease
  • Family caregivers
  • Burden
  • Grief