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Eva between anxiety and hope: integrating anthroposophic music therapy in supportive oncology care

Eran Ben-Arye, Yotam Ben-Arye, Yael Barak
  • Eran Ben-Arye
    Integrative Oncology Program, The Oncology Service, Lin Medical Center, Haifa, Israel |
  • Yotam Ben-Arye
    Complementary and Traditional Medicine Unit, Department of Family Medicine, Technion-Israel Institute of Technology, Haifa, Israel and Clalit Health Services, Haifa and Western Galilee District, Israel
  • Yael Barak
    Integrative Oncology Program, The Oncology Service, Lin Medical Center, Haifa, Israel


Music therapy is a significant modality in the treatment of patients with cancer, who suffer emotional and spiritual distress as well as chemotherapy side effects that impair their quality of life. In this article, we present a case study of a patient challenged with recurrent ovarian cancer who received, concomitant with chemotherapy, a special form of music therapy based on anthroposophic medicine (AM) aimed at alleviating anxiety and improving her general well-being. AM-centered music therapy goals are discussed in regard to two modes of treatment: receptive listening and clinical composition. Next, these two treatment modes are discussed in a broader context by reviewing conventional music therapy interventions during chemotherapy on two axes: a. standardized vs. individualized treatment; b. patient’s involvement on a passive to active continuum. In conclusion, psycho-oncology care can be enriched by adding anthroposophic medicine-oriented music therapy integrated within patients’ supportive care.


Integrative medicine; Anthroposophic medicine; Music therapy; Quality of life; Anxiety; Cancer

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Submitted: 2013-12-18 01:16:44
Published: 2015-11-30 11:53:52
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Copyright (c) 2015 Eran Ben-Arye, Yotam Ben-Arye, Yael Barak

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