Examining the dyadic music therapy treatment (DUET): The case of a CP child and his mother

Avi Gilboa, Efrat Roginsky

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Children with cerebral palsy (CP) experience not only motor disabilities but other, emotional, communicative, and social impairments. The relationship between caregivers (usually mothers) and CPs as well as their communication patterns might also be impaired. Music therapy was found to be effective with CPs and dyadic treatment has been found to be effective in facilitating mother-child relationships. However, music therapy and dyadic treatment were never combined to address CPs and their mothers. We present the dyadic music therapy treatment (DUET) and report of a preliminary study that examined if it was effective. The DUET of one dyad was videotaped and subsequently analyzed according to the mixed methods approach. Qualitative analysis resulted in 10 types of communication patterns, seven being non-verbal, two musical, and one verbal. Twenty-two types of relationship were found, 17 being coordinated relationships and five uncoordinated ones. Analyzing the frequencies of these types across the DUET sessions showed that dyadic communication increased significantly, especially in the second half of the treatment. It was also found that relationship types became more coordinated as the treatment progressed. The functions of music in the DUET are discussed and recommendations for future research are provided.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)103-132
Number of pages30
JournalNordic Journal of Music Therapy
Issue number2
StatePublished - 2010
Externally publishedYes


  • Cerebral palsy
  • Dyadic therapy
  • Mother-child relationship, mother-child communication patterns
  • Music therapy
  • Short term therapy

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Psychiatric Mental Health
  • Anthropology
  • Arts and Humanities (miscellaneous)
  • Complementary and alternative medicine


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