Abstract

Background: In the absence of cure for age-related neurodegenerative diseases, non-drug interventions (NDIs) represent useful options. Quality of life (QOL) is a multidimensional concept progressively affected by cognitive decline. How single or multiple NDIs impact QOL is unknown.

Results: We found no significant effect of multiple over single NDI on QOL. Socio-demographic variables influenced patients’ (age, gender, caregivers’ occupational status, management of patients’ financial affairs) and caregivers’ (gender, occupational status, patients’ severity of cognitive decline) QOL. When dyads interrupted interventions after 6 months, their QOL was lower and caregivers’ anxiety, depression and physical symptoms were higher at the end of the study.

Conclusions: While the type and number of interventions do not appear to be critical, the continuity of adapted interventions in the long-term might be important for maintaining QOL of patients and caregivers.

Methods: This is a multicenter (7 Swiss Memory Clinics), quasi-experimental, one-year follow-up study including 148 subjects (mild cognitive impairment or mild dementia patients and their caregivers). Primary outcome was the effect of multiple vs single NDIs on QOL. Secondary outcome included NDIs effect on patients’ cognitive impairment and functional autonomy, caregivers’ burden, severity of patients’ neuropsychiatric symptoms and dyads’ anxiety and depression.