No Effect of a Musical Intervention on Stress Response to Venepuncture in a Neonatal Population


Acta Paediatrica




AIM: To investigate the effect of a musical intervention on neonatal stress response to venepuncture as measured by salivary cortisol levels and pain profile scores. METHODS: In a randomised control crossover trial, participants were randomised to both a control arm (sucrose) and intervention arm (sucrose and music) for routine venepuncture procedures. Salivary swabs were collected at baseline, 20 minutes post-venepuncture and 4 hours post-venepuncture. Pain levels were assessed using the Premature Infant Pain Profile (PIPP). A total of 16 preterm neonates participated in both arms to complete the study. RESULTS: Cortisol values were elevated at all timepoints in the intervention arm (baseline, 20 minutes, and 4 hours post-procedure) but not significantly so (P = .056, P = .3, and P = .575, respectively). Median change in cortisol values from baseline was +128.48 pg/mL (-47.66 to 517.02) at 20 minutes and +393.52 pg/mL (47.88-1221.34) at 4 hours post-procedure in the control arm compared to -69.564 pg/mL (-860.96 to 397.289) and +100.48 pg/mL (-560.46 to 842.99) at 20 minutes and 4 hours post-procedure in the intervention arm. There was no statistically significant difference observed between groups (P = .311 at 20 minutes, and P = .203 at 4 hours post-procedure). PIPP scores were not significantly different between study arms. CONCLUSION: Our findings did not support the additional benefit of music intervention on neonatal stress response to venepuncture in preterm infants.

Music and Health Institute Terms

Cortisol Levels; Infants; Invasive Medical Procedures; Mental Health; Mental Health Hormone Levels; Mental Health Management; Music Listening; Music Medicine; Newborn Infants; Pain; Pain Management and Control; Pain Score or Rating; Premature Infants; Procedural Pain; Recorded Music Listening; Stress

Indexed Terms

Newborn Infants; Premature Infants; Pain; Pain Management; Phlebotomy; cortisol; music intervention; neonatology

Study Type

Quantitative Methods; Randomized Controlled Trial

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