Effects of the Tailored Activity Program in Brazil (TAP-BR) for Persons With Dementia: A Randomized Pilot Trial

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Abstract

Objectives:

The objectives of this study were to evaluate the effects of the Tailored Activity Program—Brazilian version (TAP-BR), on behavioral symptoms and the quality of life (QOL) in persons with dementia, as well as on their caregivers, and on caregiver burden.

Materials and Methods:

A 2-group randomized controlled trial with 30 dyads was conducted: the experimental group (n=15) received TAP-BR over 4 months, and a wait-list control group (n=15) received usual care. Dyads were recruited from the community of Santos City, Brazil.

Results:

For persons with dementia, 50% were female individuals, the average age was 81.37 (±7.57), and the educational level was 9.97 (±5.32) years. For caregivers, 83.33% were female, the average age was 65.97 (±10.13), and the educational level was 12.10 (±4.44) years. At posttest, in comparison with the wait-list control group, experimental group caregivers reported greater reductions in number (P<0.001; Cohen d=0.93), frequency (P<0.001; Cohen d=1.12), and intensity (P<0.001; Cohen d=0.77) of the behavioral psychological symptoms of dementia, and caregiver distress (P<0.001; Cohen d=0.87). Caregivers also reported improvement in their own QOL (P<0.05; Cohen d=0.57) and that of the person with dementia (P<0.01; Cohen d=0.56); no differences were found in the ratings of QOL by the person with dementia themselves.

Conclusions:

The results provide compelling evidence that the TAP-BR is an effective strategy to support dementia caregivers in other cultures (cross-validation).

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