The Efficacy of Guided Imagery and Music (GIM) in the Treatment of Rheumatoid Arthritis


Journal of The Association For Music & Imagery




The purpose of this study was to evaluate the effectiveness of the Bonny Method of Guided Imagery and Music on biological and functional articular measures, pain, depression and psychological symptoms in 27 persons (aged 26-78 yrs) with rheumatoid arthritis. Biological and functional markers of disease states were C Reactive Protein, Rheumatoid Factor, Erythrocyte Sedimentation Rate, 50-foot walking speed, morning stiffness, and joint count. The Symptom Checklist-90-R (SCL-90-R), the Long-Form McGill Pain Questionnaire (MPQ), and Center for Epidemiological Studies-Depression Scale were used to assess psychological status. All measurements were collected at the initial interview session, at the 6th GIM treatment session, 2 weeks after the last GIM treatment session, and 8 weeks after the last GIM treatment session. Results from the study show significant decrease in the level of psychological distress as measured by the SCL-90-R and the subjective experience of pain as measured by the Long-Form of the MPQ. GIM appears to be effective in reducing pain and psychological symptoms, improving physical functioning, and, ultimately, in improving the quality of life for those with rheumatoid arthritis. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2016 APA, all rights reserved)

Music and Health Institute Terms

Depression; Distress; Elderly; Guided Imagery; Joint Pain; Mobility; Mood Scales; Music Medicine; Music and Imagery; Osteoarthritis; Pain; Pain Management and Control; Psychological Outcomes; Quality of Life; Questionnaires; Self-Report Measures; Symptom Management

Indexed Terms

rheumatoid arthritis; guided imagery; pain; depression; psychological symptoms; Mental Disorders; Major Depression

Study Type

Quasi-Experimental Study; Quantitative Methods

PubMed ID


Document Type


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