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Creative Arts May Help Cancer Patients Cope

Review shows participation in dance, music, art or writing can soothe anxiety, depression and pain

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Still, Loscalzo said, it's a step forward that a journal as prestigious as JAMA published the findings.

Cancer patients seeking to find creative arts classes can ask their doctor or the resource center at their cancer center. They are still not commonplace, Loscalzo said. "[At City of Hope], we screen and ask patients what would be helpful," he said. They offer yoga, cooking classes, music, art and other opportunities.

If a patient's doctor or cancer center does not know of any such opportunities, Puetz suggested seeking out an art, music or dance class in the community. Senior centers and community colleges might offer the classes. Even if the classes are not specifically designed for patients with cancer, "there are no negative consequences," Puetz said.

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