Art Intervention May Be Beneficial for Cancer Patients

Brief bedside session associated with improved positive mood, pain scores and decreased anxiety
Brief bedside session associated with improved positive mood, pain scores and decreased anxiety

HealthDay News — A bedside visual art intervention may help with cancer patients' pain, anxiety, and mood, according to a study published online April 17 in the European Journal of Cancer Care.

J.J. Saw, of the Mayo Clinic School of Medicine in Rochester, Minnesota, and colleagues assessed whether a brief bedside visual art intervention (BVAI) facilitated by art educators improved mood and reduced pain and anxiety in 21 patients with hematological malignancies. The goal of the BVAI session was to teach art technique for about 30 minutes. 

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The researchers found that there was a significant improvement in positive mood and pain scores as well as a decrease in negative mood and anxiety. The vast majority of patients (95%) felt BVAI was an overall positive experience and wished to participate in future art-based interventions (85%).

"This accessible experience, provided by artists within the community, may be considered as an adjunct to conventional treatments in patients with cancer-related mood symptoms and pain," the authors write.

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