Relationship Satisfaction in People with Parkinson's Disease and Their Caregivers : a Cross-Sectional Observational Study
Parkinson's disease (PD) is a neurodegenerative disorder, which leads to reduced health-related quality of life (HR-QoL) and autonomy in advanced stages of the disease. Hence, people with PD (PwPD) are in need of help, which is often provided by informal caregivers, especially spouses. This might influence the relationship satisfaction in patients and their spousal caregivers. Additionally, previous studies have shown that a reduced relationship satisfaction may result in mental disorders and reduced physical health. The aim of this study is to identify factors influencing PwPD and their caregivers' relationship satisfaction in a cross-sectional observational study. Analyses revealed an overall satisfying relationship, measured by the Quality of Marriage Index, in PwPD (n = 84) and their caregivers (n = 79). Relationship satisfaction in PwPD mildly decreased with reduced HR-QoL and more severe depressive symptoms. Reduced relationship satisfaction in caregivers was significantly associated with decreased HR-QoL, higher caregiver burden, more severe depressive symptoms and increased neuropsychiatric symptoms in PwPD. Further studies are needed to investigate the influence of the identified factors over time and if relationship satisfaction has a reciprocal impact on caregiver burden, HR-QoL as well as mental and physical health.