Background Music Therapy is the clinical and evidence-based use of music interventions to accomplish individualized goals within a therapeutic relationship by a credentialed professional who has completed an approved music therapy program. Music therapy interventions can be designed to alleviate pain, manage stress, and promote physical rehabilitation in addition to express feelings, enhance memories, improve communication, and promote wellness.
Recently music therapy is much further innovated in rehabilitation for such as dementia and parkinsonism, however, few reports have been made for arthritis including rheumatoid arthritis (RA).
Objectives Since 2010, we have held music therapy activity annually in monthly patient education classes for patients with RA. In this study we surveyed the effects of music therapy for patients with RA.
Methods Music therapy activity was conducted by a credentialed music therapist, a volunteer pianist, hospital staffs, and healthcare students. Six Japanese songs were sung with a piano accompaniment. Three of 6 were sung and simultaneously played with chime bars (a sort of hand bells) following colored notes by the participants. General health condition, pain, and state anxiety were surveyed by self-rating questionnaire including 10cm visual analog scale (VAS), face pain rating scale, and State Trait Anxiety Index (STAI). Results were statistically analyzed with Wilcoxon signed-rank test or Student's t-test.
Results Thirty patients with RA (28 females and 2 males) were participated the survey. Twenty were in 60s, 10 in 50s and 10 in 70s. Modified health assessment questionnaire (mHAQ) of the attendee was 0.55±0.62 (0-2.6). VAS was significantly improved from 2.8±2.9 to 2.4±2.7 (p<0.05), face scale was significantly improved from 6.1±5.1 to 4.2±4.2 (p<0.01), and state anxiety of STAI was also significantly improved from 39.0±10.9 to 32.0±10.5 (p<0.01) by music therapy. A patient could not play the instrument by physical disability and another patient had some joint pain by playing. However, almost all the participants were in favor of playing chime bars.
Conclusions Music therapy using musical instruments improves pains and physical and psychological conditions of patients with RA.
Disclosure of Interest None declared