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Saturday, June 11, 2005

"...a real dearth..."

A quote:  "Qualitative studies make up the majority of research support in the area of hospice and palliative care music therapy, but there is a real dearth in the literature of empirical, quantitative studies."

The April 2005 issue of Evidenced Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine has a review of the literature on music therapy in the hospice setting (free full text is available from PubMed Central).  Basically there is zero quality quantitative evidence that it is effective in improving quality of life in the hospice setting.  One wonders--if any payors are considering this--on what grounds they would.  Pain, discomfort, & dysphoria are, by definition, subjective experiences and one hopes that with large trials music therapy can demonstrate it can alleviate these at the end of life.

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