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The purpose of this study was to examine the effects of therapeutic play on outcomes of children undergoing day surgery. Two hundred and three children admitted for day surgery were invited to participate in a randomized controlled trial. The experimental group received therapeutic play; the control group received routine information preparation. Children in the experimental group reported significantly lower state anxiety scores in pre- and postoperative periods and exhibited fewer negative emotions at induction of anesthesia than children in the control group. No significant differences were found between the two groups in postoperative pain. The study provides some evidence that therapeutic play is effective in pre- as opposed to postsurgical management of children.

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Journal Article

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