Sunday, April 1, 2012

Music Reducing Stress in Medical Procedures

Here are two stories talking about the use of music to reduce the stress experienced by people undergoing medical procedures. It's not a new concept, but it does seem to be gaining ground.

In this BBC article, music was used during surgical procedures.

The group played music scored about a third less on anxiety levels and were also noted to have more relaxed breathing patterns during the surgery - an average of 11 breaths per minute compared to 13 breaths per minute in the non-music group.

This ties in with past studies have which have shown music may help ease pain and can help hospital patients on ventilators breathe more easily.

In this second story, music was used to reduce stress during prostate biopsies.

Among study participants in both groups with no musical intervention, diastolic blood pressure remained elevated after the procedure, compared to before. But the men who wore the headphones and listened to Bach had no such spike in blood pressure. Diastolic blood pressure often rises as a function of stress and anxiety.

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