Mind-body (including meditation and yoga)
Secondary Topic: Research Methodology
Tertiary Topic: State of the science/evidence base for integrative modalities
Conducting a scoping review on mind-body medicine in pediatric oncology
Angelica L D'Aiello, BA, SUNY Stony Brook, Stony Brook, NY, United States; Jennifer A Lyon, MS, MLIS, AHIP, Children's Mercy Kansas City, Kansas City, MO, United States
Late Breaker: No
Scoping reviews represent a valuable technique for assessing the conceptual underpinnings of emerging topic areas, particularly when the topical literature encompasses varying interventions, research techniques, and outcomes. Here we describe our experience conducting a scoping review of mind-body interventions in pediatric oncology.
We utilized the Joanna Briggs Institute scoping review guidelines as a methodological base. The worldwide English language literature was searched for interventional studies on the use of integrative mind-body techniques to treat pediatric (0-19 years) cancer patients from 1/1/1990 to 3/14/2017. Databases searched were MEDLINE (PubMed), the Cochrane Central Registry of Controlled Trials (Wiley), CINAHL (Ebsco), PsycInfo (Ebsco), Web of Science Core Collection (Clarivate), and Scopus (Elsevier). Exclusion criteria included studies with: 1) age- and disease category-mixed populations without sub-analysis; 2) conventional therapies; 3) ingestible interventions; and 4) population size <5 patients.
Both authors individually evaluated every abstract, resulting in 274 conflicts out of 2,165 examined. Conflicts were resolved by mutual agreement, resulting in the elimination of 1,867 abstracts. Both authors individually screened the remaining 298 full-text articles, mutually-resolved 26 conflicts, ending with 74 selected articles. Citation tracking identified 4 additional studies for a final total of 78 included studies. These were iteratively examined, leading to more stringent definitions of exclusion criteria. The final major categories of interventions included “meditation/mindfulness,” “yoga/tai chi,” “massage,” “healing touch/reiki,” “acupuncture,” “art/music therapy,” “virtual reality/advanced technology,” and “complex programs.”
The success of a scoping review on emerging fields such as integrative medicine depends on the initial precision of inclusion/exclusion criteria and a willingness to fine-tune those criteria based on the nature of the literature itself. Within the field of pediatric oncology, there is a wide range of mind-body interventions being studied that are imprecisely defined. The scoping review illuminates the need for significantly improved clarity of interventions and outcomes.