Effectiveness of listening to music and playing with Lego on children's postoperative pain

Published:December 20, 2022DOI:


      • Approved by the Committee of Ethics in Shahid Beheshti University of Medical Sciences (IR.SBMU.PHARMACY.REC.1399.321).
      • Playing with Legos had a greater effect on reducing postoperative pain in children than listening to music.
      • Nurses are encouraged to provide an appropriate condition for children to play with Legos after surgery.



      The present study aimed to compare the effectiveness of music and playing with Lego in postoperative management pain in children.

      Design and methods

      In this three-group quasi-experimental study, the participants in this interventional study were 96 children aged 6 to 12 years admitted to the pediatric surgery ward of Mofid Hospital and Medical Center in Tehran. The participants were selected using convenience sampling. They were then randomly placed into three intervention groups. Pain intensity was measured for the participants in all three groups before the intervention. The intervention was performed in two 15-min sessions with an interval of 5 min in three intervention groups. Then pain intensity was measured using the Oucher Pain Scale before the intervention and in four intervals: Immediately after the intervention, half an hour, one hour, and 3 h after the intervention, respectively. Pain intensity was also measured at the same time intervals for the participants in the control group. The collected data were analyzed with SPSS-25 software using descriptive statistics, the Bonferroni test, and Tukey's test.


      The data showed that the three groups were identical in terms of demographic characteristics (p > 0.05).A comparison of the music listening group and the control group showed statistically significant difference in terms of postoperative pain (P < 0.05).However, the data showed significant differences between the control group and the Lego group in terms of pain intensity immediately after the intervention, half an hour, one hour, and 3 h after the intervention, respectively (p < 0.05).The data also revealed a significant difference between the children in the music group and the Lego group at all phases (p < 0.05), and the children in the Lego group reported less pain after the intervention compared to the children in the music listening group. Nevertheless, there was a statistically significant difference between the three groups in terms of reported pain intensity half an hour, one hour, and three hours after the intervention (p < 0.05).


      The results showed that playing with Legos had a greater effect on reducing postoperative pain in children than listening to music. Thus, nurses are recommended to make arrangements for children to play with Legos after surgery.

      Practice implication

      Playing with Legos can be used to control postoperative pain in school-age children in medical centers and wards of pediatric hospitals.


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