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STRESS MANAGEMENT INTERVENTION TO PREVENT POST–INTENSIVE CARE SYNDROME–FAMILY IN PATIENTS’ SPOUSES

Paula L. Cairns, PhD, RN, Harleah G. Buck, PhD, RN, Kevin E. Kip, PhD, Carmen S. Rodriguez, PhD, RN, ANP-BC, AOCN, Zhan Liang, PhD, RN, and Cindy L. Munro, PhD, RN, ANP-BC

AJCC AMERICAN JOURNAL OF CRITICAL CARE

Medical Journal

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Former ICU Patients, Former ICU Patients' Family Members, Friends or Caregivers

No

Background Post–intensive care syndrome–family (PICS-F) refers to acute and chronic psychological effects of critical care on family members of patients in intensive care units (ICUs). Evidence suggests that increased distress during the ICU stay increases risk of PICS-F. Sensation Awareness Focused Training (SAF-T) is a new, promising stress management intervention, but the feasibility of such training during the ICU stay for family caregivers who are acting as the surrogate decision-maker for patients who are undergoing mechanical ventilation is unknown.
Objectives To assess feasibility and acceptability of SAF-T to inform a future larger randomized controlled trial.
Methods This randomized controlled trial of SAF-T (n = 5) versus a control (n = 5) group was conducted at a level 1 trauma center. Participants assigned to SAF-T completed 1 session daily for 3 days. Measures included enrollment rate, data completion rate, acceptability of SAF-T, and symptoms of PICS-F. Scales used included Perceived Stress, Hospital Anxiety and Depression, Impact of Event, and National Institutes of Health Toolbox Emotion Battery.
Results Mean age was 58 (SD, 12) years; 70% of participants were female. Predetermined feasibility criteria were met in enrollment rate (67%), outcome measures completion rate (> 90%), and SAF-T acceptability (100% of doses completed during the ICU stay) without adverse events. Stress scores after SAF-T were significantly lower than scores before SAF-T ( ˉ z = −3.5, P = .01).
Conclusions SAF-T intervention during the ICU stay is feasible, acceptable, and may improve family caregivers’post-ICU outcomes. Larger clinical trial to assess the
effectiveness of SAF-T in preventing PICS-F seem war-ranted.

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