Chinese Journal of Integrative Medicine

, Volume 19, Issue 10, pp 736–740 | Cite as

Effects of Chinese medicine five-element music on the quality of life for advanced cancer patients: A randomized controlled trial

  • Juan Liao (廖 娟)Email author
  • Yu-fei Yang (杨宇飞)
  • Lorenzo Cohen
  • Yuan-chen Zhao (赵元辰)
  • Yun Xu (许 云)
Original Article



To evaluate the effects of the Chinese medicine (CM) five-element music on quality of life for senior and non-senior advanced cancer patients.


With a randomized controlled trial, 170 advanced cancer patients were randomly assigned to three groups: the CM five-element music group (68 patients), the Western music therapy group (68 cases), and the no music therapy group (34 cases). All patients of 70 years old or older were considered seniors and the remaining patients younger than 70 years were considered nonseniors. Patients in the CM five-element music group listened to CM five-element music, the patients in the Western music group listened to Western music, and the patients in the no music group did not listen to music. A course of treatment was 3 weeks, with 30 min each day, 5 days a week. The Hospice Quality of Life Index-Revised (HQOLI-R) and Karnofsky performance score (KPS) were measured in the three groups before and after treatment. The symptom diary score was measured in the three groups every 3 days, 7 times in total.


CM five-element music group showed a significant difference of HQOLI-R, KPS and symptom diary score with other groups (all P<0.01). There were significant differences of HQOLI-R, symptom diary score, and KPS after treatment in CM five-element music group and other groups in the non-senior subgroup (P<0.05). Additionally, there were significant differences in HQOLI-R and KPS after treatment among the three groups in the senior subgroup (P<0.05).


CM five-element music therapy could improve the quality of life and KPS for senior and non senior advanced cancer patients, and it could improve subjective symptoms for non-senior advanced cancer patients.


five-element music advanced cancer quality of life randomized controlled trial music theragpy 


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Copyright information

© Chinese Association of the Integration of Traditional and Western Medicine and Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  • Juan Liao (廖 娟)
    • 1
    Email author
  • Yu-fei Yang (杨宇飞)
    • 1
  • Lorenzo Cohen
    • 2
  • Yuan-chen Zhao (赵元辰)
    • 1
  • Yun Xu (许 云)
    • 1
  1. 1.Oncology Department of Xiyuan HospitalChina Academy of Chinese Medical SciencesBeijingChina
  2. 2.The University of Texas MD. Anderson Cancer CenterAndersonUSA

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