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Keywords

caregivers, dyads, gender, heart failure, illness management

 

Authors

  1. Lee, Christopher S. PhD, RN, FAHA, FAAN, FHFSA
  2. Sethares, Kristen A. PhD, RN, CNE, FAHA
  3. Thompson, Jessica Harman PhD, RN, CCRN-K
  4. Faulkner, Kenneth M. PhD, RN, ANP
  5. Aarons, Emily
  6. Lyons, Karen S. PhD, FGSA

Abstract

Background: The ways in which patients with heart failure (HF) and their care partners work together to manage HF are often overlooked.

 

Objective: The aim of this study was to identify and compare different patterns of HF dyadic illness management.

 

Methods: This was a secondary analysis of data on HF dyads. Heart failure management was measured using patient and care partner versions of the Self-Care of HF Index and European HF Self-care Behavior Scale. Latent class modeling was used to identify patterns of HF dyadic management.

 

Results: The mean age of the 62 patients and their care partners was 59.7 +/- 11.8 and 58.1 +/- 11.9 years, respectively. A majority of patients (71.0%) had class III/IV HF, and a majority of the couples (95.2%) were married. Two distinct dyadic patterns were observed, 1 collaborative management type (n = 42, 67.7%) and 1 autonomous management type (n = 20, 32.3%). Dyads in the autonomous pattern were mostly female patients with male care partners; patients in this pattern also were more anxious and depressed, and reported worse relationship quality compared with collaborative dyads.

 

Conclusion: There is an engendered spectrum of collaboration in how HF patient-care partner dyads work together to manage HF that needs to be considered in clinical care and research.