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January 2022

The effect of music on anxiety in children undergoing cardiac catheterization

Abstract: Thirteen children ages nine months to fifteen years participated in this study which investigated the effect of music as a transitional object on behavioral measures of anxiety and the need for additional sedative medication during cardiac catheterization. Both groups met with the music therapist the evening prior to the catheterization procedure to participate in a music activity. Children three years and older wrote a song about a favorite animal who goes to the hospital. Younger children sang familiar songs with family members. The experimental group was accompanied by the music therapist to the catheterization lab the following morning. Taped music from the previous evenihng and other familiar songs were played for them throughout the procedure. Multiple measures for the experimental and control groups were recorded throughout the procedure on a Behavioral Scale devised by this researcher which measured both passive and active expressions of sound/speech, movement, facial expression and environmental coping. A test was used to determine differences between groups on the pretest, behaviors during the procedure, and the need for additional medication. Two age matched groups of four subjects each were also analyzed for differences. No significant differences between groups were found; hwoever trends were noted. Experimental subjects were less anxiuos during the period in the hallway prior to the procedure, and were more passively anxious during the procedure than subjects in the control group. This study implies that familiar music and the presence of a substitute mother may cause children to cope in a more passive manner which, in turn, is more of an aid to the doctors during the procedure. Although familiar music and the presence of a substitute mother may not cause a child to experience less anxiety during the catheterization procedure, it may aid the child in coping in a more acceptable manner.

Note: cardiac-catheterization.

Keyword(s): music, anxiety, anxiety-reduction, children, hospitalized, familiar, music, mother.

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