Randomized controlled trial of music during kangaroo care on maternal state anxiety and preterm infants' responses

Int J Nurs Stud. 2006 Feb;43(2):139-46. doi: 10.1016/j.ijnurstu.2005.04.008. Epub 2005 Jul 5.


The purpose of this randomized controlled trial was to investigate the influences of music during kangaroo care (KC) on maternal anxiety and preterm infants' responses. There are no experimental studies that explore the influences of combination of music and KC on psychophysiological responses in mother-infant dyads. Purposive sampling was used to recruit 30 hospitalized preterm infants body weight 1500 gm and over, gestational age 37 weeks and lower from two NICUs. Mother-infant dyads were randomly assigned to the treatment and the control group using permuted block randomization stratified on gender. There were 15 mother-infant dyads in each group. Subjects in the treatment dyads listened to their choice of a lullaby music during KC for 60 min/section/day for three consecutive days. Control dyads received routine incubator care. Using a repeated measures design with a pretest and three posttests, the responses of treatment dyads including maternal anxiety and infants' physiologic responses (heart rate, respiratory rate, and O2 saturation) as well as behavioural state were measured. The results revealed that there were no significant differences between the two groups on infants' physiologic responses and the values were all in the normal range. However, infants in the treatment group had more occurrence of quiet sleep states and less crying (p<0.05-0.01). Music during KC also resulted in significantly lower maternal anxiety in the treatment group (p<0.01). Maternal state anxiety improved daily, indicating a cumulative dose effect. The findings provide evidence for the use of music during KC as an empirically-based intervention for bahavioural state stability and maternal anxiety in mother-infant dyads.

Publication types

  • Multicenter Study
  • Randomized Controlled Trial
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Analysis of Variance
  • Anxiety / prevention & control*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Infant Behavior
  • Infant Care*
  • Infant, Newborn
  • Infant, Premature / physiology
  • Infant, Premature / psychology*
  • Male
  • Mothers / psychology*
  • Music Therapy*
  • Taiwan