NCPD Article

Incorporating Music Therapy With Acupuncture in Managing Cancer Pain at an Acupuncture Practice

Jessica Latchman

Liem Q. Le

Anthony McGuire

acupuncture, cancer, cancer-related pain, complementary medicine, music therapy
CJON 2024, 28(3), 305-312. DOI: 10.1188/24.CJON.305-312

Background: Complementary and alternative medicine encompasses various nonpharmacologic interventions for managing pain, such as acupuncture and music therapy. Few studies have combined these two interventions in the management of cancer-related pain.

Objectives: The purpose of this evidence-based project was to compare acupuncture-only therapy versus dual therapy (acupuncture and music therapy) on pain intensity scores in patients with cancer.

Methods: This evidence-based project included 102 participants at a private acupuncture practice. One group had acupuncture only for six weeks, and another had six weeks of acupuncture and music therapy. The Numeric Pain Rating Scale was used to assess pain before and after the interventions.

Findings: Findings showed that both groups had clinically and statistically significant improvements in pain intensity scores. Although a significant difference was not noted between the two groups, acupuncture and music therapy were each found to be effective for managing cancer-related pain.

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