A study looking at choir singing as a way to improve people’s wellbeing

Please note - this trial is no longer recruiting patients. We hope to add results when they are available.

Cancer type:

Bowel (colorectal) cancer
Breast cancer
Prostate cancer

Status:

Closed

Phase:

Other

This study is for people with breast, bowel (colorectal) or prostate cancer as well as people who have been affected by cancer in some way.

More about this trial

When you have cancer, you might have problems related to both the cancer and its treatment. This can impact on your personal wellbeing. 

We know from research that singing can: 

  • improve your mood 
  • reduce the amount of stress hormones Open a glossary item
  • improve your immune system Open a glossary item

Researchers in this study want to find out if singing in a choir can improve the wellbeing of people with breast, bowel and prostate cancer. Researchers are also looking for people who:

  • look after someone with cancer
  • have lost a relative or someone they looked after because of cancer
  • are hospital staff
  • have been affected by cancer in some way 

Everyone taking part will meet to sing in a choir either in Fulham (central London) or Sutton (Surrey). But if you live too far away or can’t come to the meetings, you can still take part in this study (without doing any singing). 

The main aim of this study is to find out if choir singing can improve the wellbeing of people with breast, bowel and prostate cancer as well as people who have been affected by cancer in some way.

Who can enter

The following bullet points list the entry conditions for this study. Talk to the study team if you are unsure about any of these. They will be able to advise you. 

You may be able to join this study if you are more than 18 years old and at least 1 of the following apply. You:

You cannot join this study if any of these apply:

  • You are part of a choir and sing with them weekly
  • You have had psychological treatment in the past month or you are going to have treatment in the next 3 months
  • You have started a new drug to help with depression or anxiety in the past month 

As well as the above you mustn’t have any of the following if you have breast, prostate or bowel cancer:

  • You are having chemotherapy or radiotherapy
  • You have had chemotherapy, radiotherapy or surgery in the past 90 days (3 months)
  • You are going to have surgery in the next 12 weeks 
  • You have an autoimmune disease Open a glossary item such as lupus
  • You take drugs that damp down your immune system (immunosuppressants) such as steroids 
  • You are pregnant 

Trial design

Researchers hope that around 420 people from the UK will take part. 

You have a choir meeting every week. This will last about 1 hour each time. You have up to 12 meetings. After this you can continue in the choir for free if you want to.

You don’t need to have experience in singing or know how to read music to take part. 

If you can’t go to the choir meetings, you can take part in the control group Open a glossary item. This means you only complete questionnaires and give saliva (spit) samples. 

Questionnaires 
Everyone completes a questionnaire after 1 week of starting in the study and then after:

  • 6 weeks 
  • 12 weeks 
  • 24 weeks (about 6 months)

The questionnaire asks about how you are, the problems you might have and how you deal with them.

The study team will send the questionnaire to your home or you can complete them online.

Saliva (spit) samples 
The study team might ask you to give saliva samples if you have breast, prostate or bowel cancer. Researchers want to look for certain proteins and the amount of stress hormones in your body. 

You give a saliva sample after 1 week of starting in the study and then after: 

  • 6 weeks 
  • 12 weeks 
  • 24 weeks (about 6 months)

You give the saliva samples before the choir meetings, or you can do them at home. You can then either bring the samples back to the study team or they can collect them from you. 

Focus group 
Everyone is invited to a meeting (a focus group) after taking part in this study.

During the meeting the study team asks about how you feel and if taking part in the choir has helped you to improve your wellbeing. 

You don’t have to agree to take part in this meeting you don’t want to. You can still take part in this study. 

Hospital visits

You do not have any hospital visits as part of this study.

Side effects

There are no side effects from taking part in this study. If you don’t enjoy the choir, you can stop going at any time. 

Recruitment start:

Recruitment end:

How to join a clinical trial

Please note: In order to join a trial you will need to discuss it with your doctor, unless otherwise specified.

Please note - unless we state otherwise in the summary, you need to talk to your doctor about joining a trial.

Chief Investigator

Dr Daisy Fancourt

Supported by

London Cancer Alliance (LCA)
Royal College of Music London
Imperial College London
The Institute of Cancer Research (ICR) 
The Royal Marsden NHS Foundation Trust

Questions about cancer? Contact our information nurses

Freephone 0808 800 4040

Last review date

CRUK internal database number:

13806

Please note - unless we state otherwise in the summary, you need to talk to your doctor about joining a trial.

Cara took part in a clinical trial

A picture of Cara

"I am glad that taking part in a trial might help others on their own cancer journey.”

Last reviewed:

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