Music therapy with hospitalized infants-the art and science of communicative musicality

Malloch, Stephen, Shoemark, Helen, Crncec, Rudi, Newnham, Carol, Paul, Campbell, Prior, Margot, Coward, Sean and Burnham, Denis (2012) Music therapy with hospitalized infants-the art and science of communicative musicality. Infant Mental Health Journal, 33 4: 386-399. doi:10.1002/imhj.21346


Author Malloch, Stephen
Shoemark, Helen
Crncec, Rudi
Newnham, Carol
Paul, Campbell
Prior, Margot
Coward, Sean
Burnham, Denis
Title Music therapy with hospitalized infants-the art and science of communicative musicality
Journal name Infant Mental Health Journal   Check publisher's open access policy
ISSN 0163-9641
1097-0355
Publication date 2012-07-01
Sub-type Article (original research)
DOI 10.1002/imhj.21346
Open Access Status Not yet assessed
Volume 33
Issue 4
Start page 386
End page 399
Total pages 14
Place of publication Hoboken, United States
Publisher John Wiley & Sons
Language eng
Abstract Infants seek contingent, companionable interactions with others. Infants in a Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU), while receiving care that optimizes their chances of survival, often do not have the kind of interactions that are optimal for their social development. Live music therapy (MT) with infants is an intervention that aims for contingent, social interaction between therapist and infant. This study, with a limited numbers of infants, examined the effectiveness of an MT intervention in the NICU at The Royal Children’s Hospital Melbourne. Two groups of late pre-term and full-term infants were recruited to the study; one was given MT and the other was not. A healthy group of infants not given MT served as an additional control. The effect of MT was indexed using two measures reflecting infant social engagement: the Neurobehavioral Assessment of the Preterm Infant (NAPI) and the Alarm Distress Baby Scale (ADBB). Results suggest that the MT intervention used at The Royal Children’s Hospital Melbourne supports infants’ neurobehavioral development. In particular, hospitalized infants who received MT were better able to maintain self-regulation during social interaction with an adult, were less irritable and cried less, and were more positive in their response to adult handling, when compared with infants who did not receive the intervention. These are important prerequisites for social interaction and development. Further and larger scale research using MT with this population is indicated.
Q-Index Code C1
Q-Index Status Provisional Code
Institutional Status Non-UQ
Additional Notes Published July/August 2012.

Document type: Journal Article
Sub-type: Article (original research)
Collections: Non HERDC
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Created: Thu, 04 Apr 2013, 18:50:49 EST by Dr Katie Zhukov on behalf of School of Music