Helping Dementia Caregivers Manage Medical Problems: Benefits of an Educational Resource

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Family caregivers of people with dementia must attend to medical care needs of their relative, yet few available resources address comorbidities in dementia. Consequently, caregivers feel ill-equipped when medical concerns arise. In response, an educational resource—Alzheimer’s Medical Advisor (AlzMed)—was developed in 2 forms (website and book) and evaluated.


Family caregivers (143 website and 51 book) used an educational resource that provides information on medical problems, vital signs, pain, dehydration, and the healthcare system. Data were collected at baseline, 3 months, and 6 months regarding confidence in sign/symptom management, burden, depression, and anxiety.


Caregivers reported significantly improved confidence and (for website users) decreased role strain. Anxiety and depression also decreased, although not significantly. Improved confidence related to a reduction in role strain and anxiety, and care recipients did not experience adverse events.


An educational resource focusing on care of comorbid illness may benefit caregiver outcomes.

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