1Irish World Academy of Music, University of Limerick, Limerick, Ireland;2Department of Anaesthesia, Limerick University Hospital, Limerick, Ireland
Background: Music has been shown to have an analgesic effect (Bernatzky et al., 2011) yet there have been few studies on the use of music and music therapy in chronic pain. This study will investigate the use of music by patients with chronic pain and will consider the potential benefits of music and music therapy as a non-pharmacological intervention in the management of chronic pain. The aim is to investigate chronic pain patient’s perceptions of music and the benefits of music listening and playing. It will also investigate staff perceptions around the potential use of music in this setting.
Methods: A representative sample of 100 adult patients who attend the outpatient pain clinic will be included. Participants complete a fifteen-question survey that includes both quantitative and qualitative questions on music listening habits and perceptions of music. Staffs at the clinic were also been asked to answer a short one-page questionnaire on their attitudes towards the use of music in this setting.
Results: Thus far there have been 29 responses collected. The average age of participants is 55 years. Eighty-three percent of participants report benefitting from music listening or playing in some way. Participants have remarked on the benefit of relaxation the most. The most highly rated reason for listening to music was for enjoyment (89%) with relaxation (77%), reducing loneliness (75%) and tension relief (72%) also receiving high ratings. Many participants (62%) expressed an interest in availing of music therapy as part of their treatment. Only 28% of participants expressed an interest in partaking in a specially formed choir for people with chronic pain.
Conclusions: Chronic pain patients have reported benefits of listening to or playing music. There seems to be an interest in availing of music therapy as part of chronic pain treatment. Perhaps music therapy could target areas that patients have not benefited in through music listening alone; such as emotional expression and pain management.
Keywords: Music therapy; chronic pain clinic
Cite this abstract as: Fitzpatrick K, Edgeworth D, Moss H, Harmon D. Patient’s use of music in their experience of chronic pain. Mesentery Peritoneum 2018;2:AB110. doi: 10.21037/map.2018.AB110