To explore the effectiveness of preoperative psychological preparation programmes aimed to reduce paediatric preoperative anxiety and the potential factors that could have an impact on parent and children's acceptance of such interventions.
Various preoperative psychological preparation programmes are available to address paediatric preoperative anxiety. No mixed-method review has been conducted to explore the effectiveness and acceptability of these programmes.
A mixed-method systematic review.
Seven bibliographic databases were searched from inception to September 2016, complemented by hand searching of key journals, the reference lists of relevant reviews, search for grey literature and the contacting of associated experts.
The review process was conducted based on the framework developed by the Evidence for Policy and Practice Information and Co-ordinating Centre. A narrative summary and a thematic synthesis were developed to synthesise the quantitative and qualitative data respectively, followed by a third synthesis to combine the previous syntheses.
Nineteen controlled trials and eleven qualitative studies were included for data synthesis. The controlled trials reveal that educational multimedia applications and web-based programmes may reduce paediatric preoperative anxiety, while the effectiveness of therapeutic play and books remains uncertain. Qualitative studies showed parent-child dyads seek different levels of information.
Providing matched information provision to each parent and child, actively involving children and their parents and teaching them coping skills, may be the essential hallmarks of a successful preoperative psychological preparation. Further research is necessary to confirm the effectiveness of therapeutic play and books.
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