Exploring Experiences of Pain Management among Family Caregivers of Community-Dwelling Older Adults with Dementia: A Qualitative Study

Zhao, Hui, Nursing - Graduate School of Arts and Sciences, University of Virginia
Kulbok, Pamela, PV-Summer & Spec Acad Progs, University of Virginia
Romo, Rafael, School of Health and Natural Sciences, Dominican University of California
Williams, Ishan, NR-Nursing: Faculty, University of Virginia
Manning, Carol, MD-NEUR Neurology, University of Virginia

Background: Pain is a significant concern in older adults with dementia. Family caregivers play a crucial role in pain management for their care recipients. However, to date, few studies have examined family caregiver’s (FCGs) experiences of pain management for community-dwelling older adults with dementia.
Purpose: To provide a deep understanding of experiences of pain management among FCGs for community-dwelling older adults with dementia.
Methods: This study used a qualitative descriptive design and constant comparison analytic methods. Family caregivers were recruited and participated in semi-structured face-to-face interviews or phone interviews. Inclusion criterion included being an adult providing care to community-dwelling older adults. Recruitment stopped upon reaching thematic saturation. A demographic questionnaire was used to collect additional relevant information.
Results: The study included 25 family caregivers in central Virginia who ranged in age from 29 to 95. Participants were predominantly white, female, married, and had a minimum high school education. Most of them were adult children (52%) or the spouses (28%) of the care recipients. Three themes were identified: 1) Values, 2) Barriers, and 3) Support.
Conclusion: Family caregivers follow their values to make decisions in pain management. Barriers existed for effective pain management. Support is needed for family caregivers in pain management.

PHD (Doctor of Philosophy)
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