Anxiety and Depression in Parents of Children With Cerebral Palsy: A Case-Control Study
Objectives: To assess the occurrence of anxiety and depression in parents caring for a child with Cerebral Palsy.
Material and Methods: A case-control study took place at the Gambat Medical Center and Jinnah Postgraduate Medical Centre from January 2019 to April 2021. There were two group categories; Group A served as the control group while Group B consisted of parents of children with cerebral palsy. Either the mother or father of the children was included and those parents who had more than one child were excluded from this study. They were screened for anxiety and depression using the Hospital and Anxiety and Depression Scale (HADS).
Results: 112 participants were included with 56 in each group. A parent with a cerebral palsy child had significantly higher levels of depression score on HADS compared to the control group (depression; 16.67 ± 5.24 vs. 8.39 ± 4.01; p < 0.001). Similarly, anxiety was higher in parents who had a child with cerebral palsy (p<0.001). Most of the parents with cerebral palsy had severe depression i.e., 19 (33.9%) (p < 0.001). The most common type of CP was spastic diplegic and the mean depression score for different types of CP varied between 14.33 ± 6.727 and 17.67 ± 3.055 however, the difference was not statistically significant (p = 0.65).
Conclusion: The parents of children with cerebral palsy were more likely to suffer from depressive symptoms as compared to those with healthy children.
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