Arts-based interventions for hospitalised patients with cancer: A systematic literature review

Claire Carswell, Joanne Reid, Ian Walsh, Helen Noble

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

5 Citations (Scopus)
91 Downloads (Pure)


Objective: This article examines the effects of visual arts-based interventions on hospitalized patients with cancer and explore how these interventions are implemented in a clinical setting. Methods: Electronic databases searched included: MEDLINE, EMBASE, CINAHL, PsycINFO and Scopus. The search terms used were 'neoplasm', 'cancer', and 'visual arts'. Articles were excluded if the intervention was art therapy, or if the intervention was implemented outside the clinical setting. Results: The five research articles included were all set in bone marrow transplant units. A variety of outcomes were explored, including anxiety, depression and stress. While some statistically significant improvements were identified, there was a lack of consistency and rigour in methodology across the studies. Conclusion: The literature suggests that the provision of visual arts-based interventions during hospitalisation is a beneficial experience. However, there is a dearth of literature assessing the effectiveness of visual arts-based interventions for hospitalized patients with cancer; therefore, more research is needed to establish their impact.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)611-616
JournalBritish Journal of Health Care Management
Issue number12
Publication statusPublished - 07 Dec 2018


  • Arts
  • Arts in health
  • Bone marrow transplant
  • Cancer
  • Visual arts

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Leadership and Management
  • Health Policy


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