Group Drumming Modulates Cytokine Response in Mental Health Services Users: A Preliminary Study


Psychotherapy and Psychosomatics




The current pilot study was designed to test the feasibility of using music interventions in mental health. The study explored the effects of group drumming of adults with affective disorders, on a broad array of inflammatory measures over a 6-week intervention. Drumming was selected as the music intervention because of the inclusiveness of drumming circles and lack of fine motor skill requirements, and because strong steadying rhythms suggest that it may be particularly suitable in mental health settings. Across the entire intervention, significant improvements were found for depression, wellbeing and social resilience. This study demonstrated for the first time that group drumming for mental health service users can lead to reductions in cortisol and immune enhancement over individual sessions as well as reduce inflammatory activity. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2017 APA, all rights reserved)

Music and Health Institute Terms

Depressive Disorder; Engagement Level; Mental Health; Mood Disorders; Playing an Instrument; Recreative Music Methods; Wellness and Well-Being

Indexed Terms

Group drumming; cytokine; mental health services; music intervention; Cytokines; Immune System; Mood Disorders; Pilot Projects; United Kingdom; Group Intervention; Affective Disorders

Study Type

Case Study; Qualitative Methods

Document Type