Can art ease pain and anxiety in cancer patients?

Washington: A study to review the impact of art therapy at bedside on patients with haematological cancers found that it improved mood and reduced pain and anxiety.

In the study, 21 female and 10 male patients admitted to the inpatient bone marrow transplant and haematologic services at Mayo Clinic-Rochester were invited to participate in a brief bedside visual art intervention (BVAI) where the goal of the session was to teach art technique for approximately 30 minutes.

A total of 19 female and 2 male patients participated.

Significant improvements in positive mood and pain scores, as well as decreases in negative mood and anxiety, were observed.

Patients perceived BVAI as overall positive (95%) and wished to participate in future art-based interventions (85%).

The findings indicate that experiences provided by artists within the community may be an adjunct to conventional treatments in patients with cancer-related mood symptoms and pain.

The study has been published in the journal European Journal of Cancer Care. (ANI)