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Intimate Partner Violence in Community-Dwelling Long Term Older Adult Couples with Cognitive Decline: A Scoping Review

Brubaker, Sara (2023) Intimate Partner Violence in Community-Dwelling Long Term Older Adult Couples with Cognitive Decline: A Scoping Review. Master's Thesis, University of Pittsburgh. (Unpublished)

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Public Health Significance Intimate partner violence and cognitive decline are independent issues of great public health importance (Bonnie & Wallace, 2003), but conjointly, the importance is magnified, and older adults are in a unique position to experience both simultaneously. Cognitive decline is a possible diagnosis for older adults; therefore, it is necessary to understand the relationship between cognitive decline and intimate partner violence so that all members of the US population receive potential interventions, services, and supports.
Methods A scoping review was completed on the available literature obtained through Medline (Ovid) and APA PsycInfo (Ovid) searches. The search of Medline produced 271 articles and the search of PsycInfo produced an additional 149 unique articles totaling 420 articles available for review.
Results The literature search and review process resulted in 17 eligible articles. Authors investigated several types of abuse and violence including caregiver perpetrated, care receiver perpetrated, and the various motivations for such abuses. Intimate partner violence can transpire in all couples regardless of age, race, sexual orientation, or other demographics. Intimate partner violence in older adults can start in older adulthood, or it can begin when the couple is younger and persist into old age (Rosen et al., 2019). In couples where violence begins in older adulthood, cognitive decline in one partner and the other taking on caregiving responsibilities may be the precursor to violence (Rosen et al., 2019). Another very strong predictor of both intimate partner violence and potentially harmful caregiver behaviors in caregivers is their perception and feelings of premorbid relationship quality and therefore premorbid relationship satisfaction (Williamson & Shaffer, 2001). Of the reviewed articles, no prevalence estimates were given, and all studies focused on heterosexual couples. Findings from this review challenge and call into question several status quo assumptions, but ultimately more research is needed.
Conclusion As research on this topic hopefully continues and increases over the coming years, researchers need to focus on the missed and marginalized populations in order to increase social justice. Intimate partner violence in older adult couples with cognitive decline is an emerging public health and an emerging social work issue.


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Item Type: University of Pittsburgh ETD
Status: Unpublished
CreatorsEmailPitt UsernameORCID
Brubaker, Sarasab334@pitt.edusab3340009-0003-4768-9343
ETD Committee:
TitleMemberEmail AddressPitt UsernameORCID
Committee ChairAlbert, Stevensmalbert@pitt.edusmalbert
Committee MemberDauria, Emilyefd16@pitt.eduefd16
Committee MemberDeGurian, Amyaad62@pitt.eduaad62
Committee MemberEngel, Rayrengel@pitt.edurengel
Date: 15 May 2023
Date Type: Publication
Defense Date: 10 April 2023
Approval Date: 15 May 2023
Submission Date: 14 April 2023
Access Restriction: No restriction; Release the ETD for access worldwide immediately.
Number of Pages: 68
Institution: University of Pittsburgh
Schools and Programs: School of Public Health > Behavioral and Community Health Sciences
Degree: MPH - Master of Public Health
Thesis Type: Master's Thesis
Refereed: Yes
Uncontrolled Keywords: Intimate Partner Violence Older Adults Cognitive Decline
Date Deposited: 15 May 2023 21:40
Last Modified: 15 May 2023 21:40


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