Madden et al. (2010) Creative Arts Therapy Improves Quality of Life for Pediatric Brain Tumor Patients Receiving Outpatient Chemotherapy

literature type:

journal article


Jennifer R. Madden, Patricia Mowry, Dexiang Gao, Patsy McGuire Cullen, and Nicholas K. Foreman. Journal of Pediatric Oncology Nursing. 2010; Vol. 27, No. 3: pp 133-145.


This mixed methods pilot study evaluated the effects of the creative arts therapy (CAT) on the quality of life (QOL) of children receiving chemotherapy. A 2-group, repeated measures randomized design compared CAT with a volunteer’s attention (n = 16). Statistical analysis of the randomized controlled phase of the study suggested an improvement in the following areas after the CAT: parent report of child’s hurt (P = .03) and parent report of child’s nausea (P = .0061). A nonrandomized phase, using a different instrument showed improved mood with statistical significance on the Faces Scale (P < .01), and patients were more excited (P < .05), happier (P < .02), and less nervous (P < .02). Provider focus groups revealed positive experiences. Case studies are included to exemplify the therapeutic process. With heightened interest in complementary therapy for children with cancer, future research with a larger sample size is needed to document the impact of incorporating creative arts into the healing process.


arts categories:

mixed-art forms
theater arts

population(s) served: