The Effects Of Music In The Operating Room

1638 words - 7 pages

When studying for classes, many students believe a beneficial aid for focusing is putting on background music. While most may think this is a good idea, the music or outside stimulus can affect the focusing of a person in a negative way, causing impaired performance. Although having a distraction like this while studying or performing a daily task may not sound so bad, having doctors listen to music while operating on patients raises some concerns. Since a majority of people have at least one operation in their lifetime, whether it be minor like a small skin biopsy or major like a hip or knee replacement, many can agree they would like a respectable surgeon who can operate best. But what ...view middle of the document...

In order to understand how music affects the body, some background should be given to have a better foundation that can be applied to the subject. The sense we are dealing with in this case is hearing. The ears are very sensitive to sound, picking up all sorts of vibrations through the air. Noise goes through the ear canal and hits the eardrum, causing it to vibrate with sound. This sound then moves through the bones in your ear, the ossicles, and directly to the cochlea, the auditory portion of the ear. When the vibrations of sound hit the cochlea, the fluid inside starts to vibrate as well. In the cochlea are hair cells which are sensory receptors of the auditory system. The vibration in the fluid causes these hair cells to bend, sending information to the auditory nerve which then sends the signals to the brain to be interpreted as sound.
The second system that will be discussed in the effects of music on the body will be the cardiovascular system. The cardiovascular system deals with the heart, veins and arteries, and blood. The heart is the muscular organ that pumps blood to all parts of the body through the blood vessels. Blood is pushed through the body at different speeds based on how fast the heart beats. This is known as the heart rate. Another important factor of the cardiovascular system is blood pressure. This is the force of the blood exerted against the walls of the blood vessels while it’s being pumped through the body. The cardiovascular system is directly affected when music enters the ears and is processed by the brain. Tempos of music affect the heart rate and blood pressure of a person. A study was done by lead researchers and doctors Luciano Bernardi, MD and Peter Sleight, MD to understand what types of music affect these two factors. The study was done on twelve practicing musicians and twelve non musicians to compare if there was difference in participants being subject to long exposures of music. The subjects were given six types of music to listen to, including Indian raga, slow classical, fast classical, dodecaphonic, rap, and techno. The six types of music were played in random order for two minutes each with no intervening pauses. A second round of music was then played in another random order for four minutes each with a two minute break of silence in-between each type of music. The music with the faster tempos and simpler rhythmic structures caused a significant increase in heart rate and blood pressure while the slower tempo music caused a less significant increase in the two factors. These effects appear to be directly dependent to the tempo of the music and not the style. Based on this study, music has a direct effect on the cardiovascular system while conscious.
Since it is known than music directly affects people who are awake, could it also affect the people who are unconscious? While the reasons for relaxation or arousal from music are unknown, some believe it is associated with...

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