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Issues Ment Health Nurs. 2017 Mar;38(3):285-288. doi: 10.1080/01612840.2016.1264516. Epub 2017 Feb 21.

Music Therapy as a Nonpharmacological Intervention for Anxiety in Patients with a Thought Disorder.

Author information

a UPMC, Palliative Care and Psycho-oncology Department , Pittsburgh , Pennsylvania , USA.
b Robert Morris University School of Nursing and Health Sciences , Moon Township , Pennsylvania , USA.
c Saint Vincent College Marketing and Statistics Department , Marketing and Statistics , Latrobe , Pennsylvania , USA.
d Western Psychiatric Institute and Clinic of UPMC , Nursing Administration Department , Pittsburgh , Pennsylvania , USA.
e University of Pittsburgh School of Nursing Health and Community Systems Department , Pittsburgh , Pennsylvania , USA.


Music therapy has been identified as a non-pharmacological adjunct therapy to treat anxiety. This QI project aimed to assess the effects of music therapy on anxiety in a sample of patients hospitalized with a thought disorder. Participants were assessed pre- and post-group using a visual analog scale for anxiety. The intervention significantly reduced VAS scores from 3.1 pre-intervention to .897 immediately post-intervention (p = 0.008). This data suggests that music therapy may be beneficial in the short term for this population and is a low risk intervention that provides positive outcomes without the risks associated with medications, seclusion, and restraint.

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