Benefits of a Self-Management Program for the Couple Living With Parkinson's Disease: A Pilot Study. By: Lyons, Karen S.; Zajack, Alex; Greer, Melissa; Chaimov, Holly; Dieckmann, Nathan F.; Carter, Julie H. Journal of Applied Gerontology. Aug2021, Vol. 40 Issue 8, p881-889. 9p.

The goal of this pilot study was to explore health benefits for couples participating together in an existing community-based self-management workshop for Parkinson’s disease (PD). A quasi-experimental two-wave design explored the effects of the Strive to Thrive program in comparison to a wait-list control condition. Preliminary data (n = 39 couples) showed that spouses in the intervention group had greater engagement in mental relaxation techniques at 7 weeks than those in the control condition (large effect size). Small effects were observed for increases in aerobic activity and mental relaxation for the adult with PD, increases in strength-based activities and self-efficacy for spouses, declines in depressive symptoms for spouses, and decreases in protective buffering for both adults with PD and spouses. The program showed potential for existing community-based programs to benefit couples living with chronic illness.