Changes over time in caregiving demand and difficulty in spousal caregivers of coronary artery bypass graft surgery patients

Bernice C. Yates, Esther O. Parks, Amanda Hug, Kevin A. Kupzyk, Sandy K. Skradski

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

3 Scopus citations


Patients who undergo coronary artery bypass graft (CABG) surgery are often dependent on spouses or family members for care during their recovery. The purpose of this study was to examine changes over time in spousal caregivers of coronary artery bypass graft (CABG) patients in caregiving demand and caregiving difficulty and to identify the key demands and difficulties at each time point. Spouses (n = 34) of CABG patients comprised the sample. Caregiving demand and caregiving difficulty were measured using the Caregiving Burden Scale at three time points (baseline [early hospital discharge] and 3 and 6 months later) and analyzed using repeated measures analysis of variance. Mean scores of each item were used to identify the top four caregiving demands and difficulties at each time point. There was a significant decrease over time in caregiving demands (F [1.696] = 13.62, p < 0.001) and caregiving difficulties (F [1.613] = 4.52, p = 0.02). The most demanding and/or difficult caregiving activities at all time points were providing social support, managing behavior problems, taking on additional household tasks, and monitoring symptoms. Early in recovery, providing transportation was a top ranked demand and difficulty. Later in recovery (3 and 6 months), managing finances became a top ranked demand and difficulty. In conclusion, caregiving demands and difficulties declined significantly over six months for the caregivers in this study. These results indicate that caregiving demands and difficulties change over time and ongoing assessments of spouses and family members are needed to help them manage the caregiving situation.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1-3
Number of pages3
JournalApplied Nursing Research
Publication statusPublished - Feb 2018



  • Caregiver
  • Caregiving demands
  • Caregiving difficulties
  • Caregiving trajectory

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Nursing(all)

Cite this