Efficacy of Live Lullaby Singing During Procedural Pain in Preterm and Term Neonates.

Alexandra Ullsten, Pernilla Hugoson, Malin Forsberg, Lisa Forzelius, Maria Klässbo, Emma Olsson, Ulrik Volgsten, Björn Westrup, Ulrika Ådén, Lena Bergqvist, Mats Eriksson





This clinical trial tested the pain relieving effect of live lullaby singing on behavioral and physiological pain responses during venepuncture in 38 preterm and full term neonates. Acute and repeated pain, as well as the use of analgesic drugs, may have long-term negative impact on infants’ development and future behaviour. This emphasizes the need for complementary approaches to pain management such as music therapy.

Parent-preferred lullabies were performed live and standard care was provided for all neonates. Behavioral responses with regard to pain were assessed with Premature Infant Pain Profile-Revised (PIPP-R) and Behavioral Indicators of Infant Pain (BIIP). Heart rate, respiratory rate and oxygen saturation were measured each tenth second.

Although the live lullaby singing did not show a statistically significant effect on the infants’ pain score, there was a significantly calmer breathing pattern in the lullaby intervention versus the control condition in the pre-needle stage, showing a non-significant trend towards higher oxygen saturation levels and calmer heart rate in the lullaby intervention versus the control condition in the pre-needle stage. There were non-significant indications of fewer and shorter skin punctures with lullaby singing. More research is needed to explore such positive trends in the data.

Keywords: newborn infant, preterm infant, pain, music therapy, lullaby



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