Impact of Close Family Members on Older Adults' Early Response to Depression Treatment

Lynn M. Martire, Richard Schulz, Charles F. Reynolds, Jennifer Q. Morse, Meryl A. Butters, Gregory A. Hinrichsen

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

22 Scopus citations


This study of 130 depressed older adults and their spouses or adult children examined the impact of caregiver burden specific to patients' depressive symptoms on patients' response to antidepressant treatment. Primary care patients completed medical, psychiatric, and neuropsychological assessments prior to treatment, and interviews were conducted with their identified family member. As hypothesized, caregivers' depression-specific burden predicted greater depression severity for the patient at the 6th week of treatment after accounting for patients' pretreatment characteristics, caregivers' depressive symptoms, and caregivers' relationship satisfaction. Future research may identify family attitudes and behaviors that stem from burden and compromise older adults' ability to recover from depression.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)447-452
Number of pages6
JournalPsychology and aging
Issue number2
StatePublished - Jun 2008

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Social Psychology
  • Aging
  • Geriatrics and Gerontology


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