Will Your Next Pain Pill Come in Musical Form?

As a concert pianist, I’m always fascinated hearing all the ways music is used as a powerful medium. We all know that music stirs us emotionally, connects cultures and works cross-species. Recent research shows that it also helpful in relieving pain pre and post-surgery.

While there have been a variety of short studies on the topic over the years,Dr. Catherine Meads at Brunel University recently pulled all of those studies together to find out whether music worked to relieve pain. NPR reported on the findings that were published inThe Lancet:

“[Dr. Meads] and her colleagues now report that, yes indeed, surgery patients who listened to music, either before, during or after surgery, were better off in terms of reduced pain, less anxiety and more patient satisfaction.”

Meads’ study was focused on 73 clinical trials regarding the role of music among surgery patients. They were able to choose their own music pre and post surgery. It turns out that their pain level was reduced two notches on a 10-point pain scale. Interestingly, that is about the same benefit of pain pills, however, there is no side effect with music.

Personally, when I used to suffer from severe menstrual cramps, I remember grabbing my headsets at 2 am, when pain pills weren’t helping. My music of choice was simplified classical arrangements.

While he didn’t use head sets, music was a helpful form of pain management with my senior dog, Sanchez. He was suffering from a slipped disc and calming canine music was successfully utilized to help him go from crying to snoozing. It also helped keep him still during x-rays.

Have you tried using music to help ease your pain? Would you be willing to fore-go pain pills post-surgery in lieu of your desired choice of music? Thanks for sharing your thoughts in a comment below.

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67 comments

Siyus Copetallus
Siyus Copetallus3 years ago

Thank you for sharing.

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Carole R.
Carole R3 years ago

Interesting but I'm not sure about it's success with severe chronic pain.

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Magdalena C.
Past Member 3 years ago

Thank you!

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Beryl Ludwig
Beryl Ludwig3 years ago

music helps me to an extent, but with chronic pain, it is not so easy.

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Dt Nc
Dt Nc3 years ago

Danke

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Dt Nc
Dt Nc3 years ago

Danke

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nathan KENNY
emma KENNY3 years ago

tyfs

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Janet B.
Janet B3 years ago

Thanks

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Yola S.
.3 years ago

Interesting that it worked for her pet.

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Paulinha Russell
Paulinha Russell3 years ago

Thank you

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