Xavier Magazine

Turning Out Pain

Four graduate nursing students seem to have struck a chord with the medical world. Ginger Lamar, Emilie Burdette, Cindy Davis and Michelle Roa studied the effects of music on recovering coronary bypass surgery patients and found music calms more than the savage beast. It also relaxes the body and reduces the blood pressure in bypass patients, which has a positive effect on recuperation.

“Music therapy alone does not decrease pain for cardiac patients, but in combination with the other things, it does help,” says Lamar, a nurse cardiac research coordinator at Bethesda North Hospital in Cincinnati.

Lamar received a grant as well as a green light from Bethesda to begin a program of music therapy at the hospital. She’s starting by building a music library and coordinating the music with companion therapies.

So with some properly placed tunes, not only will patients benefit by feeling better faster, they’ll leave the hospital a day or two sooner, which is also good for the bottom line. And that’s music to everyone’s ears.

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