A systematic scoping literature review on the use of child life therapy (CLT) in the perioperative setting

Sarah Brown , Phillipa Cordner, Kelly Weir, Tawanda Machingura

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

Abstract

Background: Children and their caregivers often experience anxiety related to a perioperative admission. A systematic
scoping review was conducted to map the evidence for child life therapy, including the professional background of
treating clinicians.
Methods: A scoping review was conducted using the Arksey and O'Malley methodology. Six databases: PubMed,
CINAHL, PsychINFO, Cochrane Library, EMBASE and Web of Science were searched.
Results: After reviewing 578 titles and abstracts, and 55 full texts, 11 studies were retained. Included studies were
randomised controlled trials (n¼5), retrospective studies (n¼3), descriptive studies (n¼1) and clinical studies (n¼2).
Child life therapy was effective for anxiety, anaesthetic induction quality, child cooperation and parental satisfaction.
Professions delivering interventions included Child Life Therapists, nurses and a multidisciplinary team.
Conclusion: There is emerging evidence for child life therapy which may be used to guide delivery of paediatric
procedural support in perioperative settings. Further studies are needed to inform practice.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)244-259
Number of pages16
JournalJournal of Perioperative Practice
Volume32
Issue number10
Early online dateAug 2021
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2022

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