London: Displaying images of natural beauty to cancer patients can ease their pain, a study says.
Scientists at Johns Hopkins University in the US analysed patients undergoing bone marrow aspiration and biopsy (BMAB), a painful cancer treatment in which the marrow is extracted from the pelvic bone with a local anaesthetic.
Some patients were treated in a standard hospital environment, while others were exposed to pictures of birds and waterfalls. A third group were shown pictures of traffic and city life, reports the Telegraph.
The researchers found that those subjected to natural scenery experienced lesser pain, while the levels of pain felt by those shown pictures of urban life were the same as those treated under standard procedure.
The findings prove that pain cannot be alleviated just by distracting the patient.
It also provides hope to those who have tried other methods of pain alleviation like hypnosis and sedation.
"I think there are certain elements of nature that are beneficial and others that could be frightening," Noah Lechtzin, who led the research, said.
"You wouldn`t want to have rocks that potentially dangerous animals could hide behind, whereas our scene was a very open picture that had running water, the sounds had birds chirping and wind rustling through trees," he added.