The healing and spiritual properties of music therapy at a cancer care centre

McClean, S., Bunt, L. and Daykin, N. (2012) The healing and spiritual properties of music therapy at a cancer care centre. Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine, 18 (4). pp. 402-407. ISSN 1075-5535 Available from:

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Background: This article explores the theme of spirituality, health, and wellbeing, in relation to an emerging body of research on the impact of music therapy in cancer care. The focus of the article is a music therapy service established as part of a residential 5-day retreat program at a cancer care center. Aims: The aim of the study was to explore the experiences of patients with cancer with one-off group music therapy at a cancer care centre. Central emphasis is given to exploring a range of themes relating to the healing and spiritual properties of music therapy group work. Methods: This is a qualitative study, following a modified grounded theory approach. Twenty-three (23) in-depth tape-recorded telephone interviews were conducted with people who had taken part in the music therapy sessions. Results: The results focus on those findings relevant to notions of spirituality and healing, drawing on four overarching spirituality themes of transcendence, connectedness, search for meaning, and faith and hope. Conclusions: The authors consider the applicability of broader schemas that attempt to define and explore the role and significance of spirituality.

Item Type:Article
Uncontrolled Keywords:cancer, music therapy, spirituality, qualitative research
Faculty/Department:Faculty of Health and Applied Sciences > Department of Health and Social Sciences
ID Code:16674
Deposited By: Dr S. McClean
Deposited On:30 Apr 2012 10:03
Last Modified:16 Nov 2016 06:53

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