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Published in: Clinical Rheumatology 6/2024

25-04-2024 | Juvenile Rheumatoid Arthritis | ORIGINAL ARTICLE

Caregiver burden in families of children with juvenile idiopathic arthritis in India

Authors: Nikhil C. Gowda, Rudrarpan Chatterjee, Anu Balakrishnan, Able Lawrence, Amita Aggarwal

Published in: Clinical Rheumatology | Issue 6/2024

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Abstract

Juvenile Idiopathic Arthritis (JIA) causes caregiver burden on families with children affected with it. Our study aimed to explore this multifaceted burden in the Indian context. In this cross-sectional study, we administered the Hindi translated CAREGIVER questionnaire to adult caregivers in the families of JIA patients ≤ 18 years. The responses to the 28 items were used to calculate the burden scores in various dimensions. The relationship of the global burden scores with demographic and socioeconomic factors were analysed. Non parametric tests were used. Two hundred twenty-one caregivers participated with a median age of 39 years (IQR 32–45). This included 116 fathers, 50 mothers, 32 brothers, 18 uncles, three grandfathers, one sister, and one grandmother. The JIA patients had a median age of 15 (12–17) years, and the male-to-female ratio was 3.2:1. Enthesitis-related arthritis was the predominant subtype (72.4%). Most caregivers (70.6%) expressed sadness at diagnosis, and 29.9% continued to express sadness. Nearly two-thirds (65.6%) had to borrow money from others. More than half (59.3%) of the caregivers neglected their health, and 9.0% became sick. Male gender of the child, systemic JIA subtype, low socioeconomic status, high disease activity, extra-articular damage, high parent-reported disease activity and poor quality of life were associated with higher global caregiver burden. JIA has a significant emotional, social, economic, and labour impact on caregivers. Economic and psychosocial support needs to be given to family caregivers caring for children with JIA.
Key Points
• JIA causes a chronic emotional toll on caregivers, which is aggravated by high disease activity in the child.
• Caregivers from rural areas and lower socioeconomic groups face disproportionate economic burden, often aggravated by losing jobs due to caregiving responsibility.
• The use of biologics was low despite high disease activity, highlighting the need for financial support.
Parent-reported outcome measures significantly correlated with caregiver burden, underscoring the importance of integrating family perspectives in care.
Appendix
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Metadata
Title
Caregiver burden in families of children with juvenile idiopathic arthritis in India
Authors
Nikhil C. Gowda
Rudrarpan Chatterjee
Anu Balakrishnan
Able Lawrence
Amita Aggarwal
Publication date
25-04-2024
Publisher
Springer International Publishing
Published in
Clinical Rheumatology / Issue 6/2024
Print ISSN: 0770-3198
Electronic ISSN: 1434-9949
DOI
https://doi.org/10.1007/s10067-024-06975-8

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