The C.A.M. Report
Complementary and Alternative Medicine: Fair, Balanced, and to the Point
  • About this web log

    This blog is intended as an objective and dispassionate source of information on the latest CAM research. Since my background is in pharmacy and allopathic medicine, I view all CAM as advancing through the development pipeline to eventually become integrated into mainstream medical practice. Some will succeed while others fail. But all are treated fairly here.

  • About the author

    John Russo, Jr., PharmD, is president of The MedCom Resource, Inc. Previously, he was senior vice president of medical communications at, a complementary and alternative medicine website.

  • Common sense considerations

    The material on this weblog is for informational purposes. It is not medical advice or counsel. Be smart, consult your health professional before using CAM.

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  • Recent Comments

    Benefits of music on stress after surgery

    Researchers at Orebro University Hospital, in Sweden, evaluated the effect of bed rest + music on the first day after surgery in order to decrease stress.

    First, the details.

    • 58 patients who underwent open coronary artery bypass grafting or aortic valve replacement surgery were studied.
    • Stress response was assessed by measuring the following parameters.
      • Cortisol blood levels
      • Heart and respiratory rate
      • Blood pressure
      • Arterial oxygen tension (PaO2, amount of oxygen in the arterial blood)
      • Arterial oxygen saturation (below 90% causes hypoxemia)
      • Subjective pain and anxiety levels.
    • At noon on day 1 after surgery, patients were assigned to a treatment group.
      • 30 minutes of uninterrupted bed rest + music and then 30 minutes of bed rest
      • 60 minutes of uninterrupted bed rest.
    • The music was soft and relaxing, included different melodies in new-age style, played with a volume at 50 to 60 dB, and distributed through a music pillow connected to an MP3 player.

    And, the results.

    • After 30 minutes of bed rest, there were significantly lower cortisol levels in the bed rest + music group vs the bed rest only group.
    • However, this difference in cortisol levels was short-lived and not present 30 minutes later.
    • There was no difference in the other parameters.

    The bottom line?

    The authors concluded, “There is sufficient practical evidence of stress reduction to suggest that a proposed regimen of listening to music while resting in bed after open heart surgery be put into clinical use.”

    The study is important because it documents a well-defined, short-lived response to music under well-defined circumstances — during the first day after heart surgery

    The results also support an earlier study summarized here.

    9/30/10 20:30 JR

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