Aims: To determine the effect of music on the management of pain and anxiety in primiparous women during labour. Background: Music is cost-effective intervention in clinical practice to reduce pain, stress, and anxiety. However, a systematic review with meta-analysis for investigating its effects during labour is still lacking. Design: A systematic review with meta-analysis. Data sources: MEDLINE, EMBASE, and CINAHL databases. Review methods: Randomized controlled trials or quasi-experimental trials concerning the effects of music among primiparous women who were expected to give normal spontaneous delivery were searched and screened up to 31 July 2017. The recruited trials for this review were compliant with the standards of the Cochrane Handbook for Systematic Reviews of Interventions. Results: A total of 392 primiparous pregnant women (197 in the music intervention group and 195 in the routine care group) from five studies were included in this review. Music as an intervention seemed to lower the pain scores for primiparous women during labour, but the effect was not statistically significant. However, there was a significant benefit of music intervention compared with routine care for primiparous women during labour. In the sensitivity analysis, music intervention showed significant effect on the improvement of pain and anxiety for primiparous women during labour. Conclusion: Music intervention may be an effective intervention for the management of pain and anxiety for primiparous women during labour.
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