Quality of Life of Family Caregivers of Patients With Cancer: A Literature Review

Luppana Kitrungrote

Marlene Z. Cohen

ONF 2006, 33(3), 625-632. DOI: 10.1188/06.ONF.625-632

Purpose/Objectives: To systematically review literature regarding the quality of life (QOL) of family caregivers of patients with cancer and evaluate the instruments measuring family caregivers' QOL.

Data Sources: PubMed, CINAHL®, PsycINFO, ISI Web of Science®, and EBSCO electronic databases; published literature.

Data Synthesis: Overall, the QOL of family caregivers of patients with cancer varied. Influences related to family caregivers' QOL were identified. Global and generic measures have been used because of the lack of specific instruments. Comparisons are complicated because several measures were used at different times along the illness trajectory with caregivers caring for people with various types and stages of cancer.

Conclusions: A more explicit definition of QOL for family caregivers of patients with cancer and specific instruments suitable for different cultures are needed to enhance knowledge.

Implications for Nursing: Maintaining the QOL of caregivers is important in their ability to provide the care required to keep family members with cancer in the community. Nurses must provide care to maintain caregivers' QOL.

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