Effect of Music Therapy on Pain After Orthopedic Surgery-a Systematic Review and Meta-analysis


Pain Practice




BACKGROUND: Although music interventions on postoperative pain (POP) have positive effects, limited research has focused on systematic reviews and meta-analyses of its efficacy for orthopedic patients. This systematic review aimed to examine the effects of music therapy on pain after orthopedic surgery. METHOD: The Cochrane Library, PubMed, Cumulative Index to Nursing and Allied Health Literature (CINAHL), Nursing Reference Center (NRC), Airiti Library, and National Digital Library of Theses and Dissertations in Taiwan were searched up to August 2019. The risk of bias from the Cochrane Handbook for Randomized Controlled Trials of Interventions was used. A standard mean difference (SMD) with 95% confidence intervals (CIs) was applied as a summary effect on postoperative pain and anxiety using RevMan version 5.3. A meta-analysis was also carried out using subgroup analysis. RESULTS: Nine randomized controlled trials were selected. (1) Music can relieve pain significantly for both music medicine (MM; SMD = -0.41, 95% CI [-0.75, -0.07], P = 0.02) and music therapy (MT; SMD = -0.31, 95% CI [-0.57, 0.04], P = 0.02). (2) Music chosen by the subjects showed significant differences for both MM (P = 0.002) and MT (P = 0.02). (3) Anxiety improved significantly among patients using MT (SMD = 0.44, 95% CI [-0.75, -0.13], P = 0.005). However, the results for the physiologic parameters, opioid requirement, and length of stay showed subtle distinctions. CONCLUSION: Music can significantly relieve POP, specifically music chosen by the participants.

Music and Health Institute Terms

Analgesic Intake; Anxiety; Hospital Length of Stay; Hospital Setting; Hospitalized Patients; Medication Use; Music Listening; Music Medicine; Music Therapy; Opioid Intake; Orthopedic Surgery; Pain; Pain Management and Control; Postoperative Pain; Postoperative Patients; Receptive Music Methods; Recorded Music Listening; Surgery; Surgical Patients

Indexed Terms

Orthopedic Procedures; Pain Management; Postoperative Pain; Taiwan; meta-analysis; orthopedic; postoperative pain; systematic review

Study Type

Meta-Analysis; Quantitative Methods; Systematic Review

PubMed ID


Document Type