From the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, I'm Ira Dreyfuss with HHS HealthBeat.
Being a caregiver for a family member with heart disease can affect the caregiver’s mental health – and possibly the caregiver’s own heart health. Researchers found that when they looked at psychological strain and depression in people who provided most or all of a patient’s care.
Lori Mosca of Columbia University Medical Center/New York-Presbyterian Hospital:
"Caregivers who reported the highest levels of depression and the lowest levels of social support at baseline had the highest level of caregiver strain reported at six months." (11 seconds)
Stress and depression can raise the risk of heart disease. So Mosca says caregivers need also to care for themselves.
Her study, supported by the National Institutes of Health, was presented at the American Heart Association Conference on Nutrition, Physical Activity and Metabolism.
Learn more at hhs.gov.
HHS HealthBeat is a production of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. I'm Ira Dreyfuss.
Last revised: May 7, 2011