The efficacy of music therapy to relieve pain, anxiety, and promote sleep quality, in patients with small cell lung cancer receiving platinum-based chemotherapy


Supportive Care in Cancer: Official Journal of the Multinational Association of Supportive Care in Cancer




PURPOSE: Chemotherapy induces a range of physical and psychological symptoms, including pain, sleep disorders, fatigue, and anxiety. We aimed to assess the efficacy of six-step music therapy in relieving pain and anxiety and improving sleep quality in lung cancer patients receiving platinum-based chemotherapy. METHODS: Between March 2013 and October 2015, we enrolled a total of 100 patients who were diagnosed with small cell lung cancer and scheduled for platinum-based chemotherapy. Patients were randomly assigned to two groups: the music therapy group (received six-step music therapy, n=50) and the control group (not received six-step music therapy, n=50). The anxiety, pain, and sleep quality of all patients were assessed using the self-rating anxiety scale (SAS), the visual analogue scale (VAS), and the Pittsburgh Sleep Quality Index (PSQI), respectively. RESULTS: There were no significant differences in the demographic characteristics and music background between the two groups. The SAS and VAS scores in the two groups were not statistically different before chemotherapy. However, patients in the music therapy group showed significantly lower SAS and VAS scores compared with the control group at both 1 day and 5 days after chemotherapy. (SAS score at 1-day post-therapy, 49.48±2.14 vs 61.46±8.8, P=0.011; SAS score at 5-day post-therapy, 39.73±1.79 vs 62.02±8.83, P=0.005; VAS score at 1-day post-therapy, 2.14±0.78 vs 4.74±1.01, P=0.005; VAS score at 5-day post-therapy, 2.06±0.79 vs 4.74±1.08, P=0.004). In addition, the total PSQI score of patients who received music therapy was also significantly higher than that of the control group after therapy (total PSQI score at 1-day post-therapy, 8.50±1.69 vs 17.81±3.01, P=0.006; total PSQI score at 5-day post-chemotherapy, 9.84±3.02 vs 18.66±2.91, P=0.012). CONCLUSION: The music therapy was an effective approach in alleviating pain and anxiety and promoting sleep quality in lung cancer patients receiving platinum-based chemotherapy. TRIAL REGISTRATION: Chinese Clinical Trial Registry (registration number: ChiCTR-TRC-13003993).

Music and Health Institute Terms

Cancer; Pain; Procedural Pain; Invasive Medical Procedures; Chemotherapy; Anxiety; Sleep Quality; Pain Management; Anxiety Scales; Self-Report Measures; Visual Analog Scale (VAS); Music Therapy

Indexed Terms

Anxiety; Pain; Chemotherapy; Lung Neoplasms; Platinum; Six-step music therapy; Sleep; Sleep quality; Small cell lung cancer; Small Cell Lung Carcinoma

Study Type

Randomized Controlled Trial; Quantitative Methods

PubMed ID

PMID: 34041615

Document Type