A Pilot Study of Patients in Postoperative Cardiac Surgery

Fred J. Schwartz


A broadcast music system has evolved at Piedmont Hospital in Atlanta, Georgia, that brings music into the intensive care units (ICUs), operating rooms, periopera- tive areas, gastrointestinal lab, and labor and delivery. A number of years ago, Piedmont Hospital extended its 10- channel music system to the open-heart ICU area, and a pilot study using headphone music was done on a conve- nience sample of 67 patients admitted to this particular ICU area who recovered from coronary artery bypass graft surgery (without valve repair). Patients receiving the treatment (music) spent significantly less time in the ICU (1,357 minutes vs. 1,657 minutes, F 1⁄4 4.29, p 1⁄4 .02). There was a trend for lower sedative charges and ICU charges, but these were not significant. The financial cost of incorporating music in the care of cardiac and cardiac surgery ICU patients is relatively small compared to the potential economic benefits.

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by The International Association for Music & Medicine