Creative arts therapies (CATs) can improve anxiety, depression, pain symptoms and quality of life among cancer patients, although the effect was reduced during follow-up in a study by Timothy W. Puetz, Ph.D., M.P.H., of the National Institutes of Health, Bethesda, Md., and colleagues.
Authors reviewed the available medical literature and included 27 studies involving 1,576 patients. Researchers found that during treatment, CAT significantly reduced anxiety, depression and pain, and increased quality of life. However, the effects were greatly diminished during follow-up, the study concludes.
"Future well-designed RCTs are needed to address the methodological heterogeneity found within this field of research," according to the study.
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JAMA Intern Med. Published online May 13, 2013. doi:10.1001/jamainternmed.2013.836