Music Therapy: A Noninvasive Treatment to Reduce Anxiety and Pain of Colorectal Cancer Patients-A Systemic Literature Review


Medicina (Kaunas, Lithuania)




Background and Objectives: Music interventions have been used for patients with cancer to meet their psychological, physical, social, and spiritual needs. This review identified the efficacy of music therapy among adult patients with colorectal cancer (CRC). Materials and Methods: We searched the PubMed/MEDLINE, CINAHL, and Cochrane Library databases. Only randomized controlled studies reported in English of patients with CRC were included. Two reviewers independently extracted data on patients and intervention measurements. The main outcomes included pain, anxiety, quality of life, mood, nausea, vomiting, vital signs. Results: A total of 147 articles were identified from the search. A total of 10 studies were included in the review. Nine out of the ten studies (90%) showed statistically and clinically significant improvements across the outcome variables. Only one study (10%) found no significant positive effect from music therapy in any of the measured outcomes. Among the seven studies measuring pain as an outcome, four studies (57%) demonstrated that music therapy reduced pain. Three studies (75%) showed that MT reduced anxiety. Conclusions: This systemic review indicates that music therapy might help reduce pain and anxiety for cancer patients, including those with colorectal cancer, who are receiving treatment in palliative care, inpatient care and outpatient care settings.

Music and Health Institute Terms

Pain; Pain Management and Control; Cancer; Invasive Medical Procedures; Chemotherapy; Noninvasive PRocedures; Radiation Therapy; Surgery; Anxiety; Nausea; Mood; Quality of Life; Physiological Measures; Subjective Measures; Hospital Setting; Palliative Care; Music Medicine

Indexed Terms

Anxiety; Pain; pain; Quality of Life; depression; colorectal cancer; Colorectal Neoplasms; quality of life

Study Type

Systematic Review; Qualitative Methods

PubMed ID


Document Type