Tuesday, August 4, 2015

When Surgeons listen to their Preferred Music, their Stitches are better and Faster -- ScienceDaily

Mozart, Beethoven, Country or Rap ?

From classical to rock, music can be heard in operating rooms across the world. Although previous studies have shown that listening to music during operations can lower the stress levels of surgeons, there is limited information on the effects of music on technical performance while completing a surgical task, such as closing incisions. Stitching prowess and speed is especially important for plastic surgeons.
Fifteen plastic surgery residents were asked to close incisions with layered stitches on pigs' feet obtained at a local food market -- pigs' feet are widely accepted as similar to human skin.
The residents were not informed of the purpose of the study. They were asked to do their best and to notify the researchers when they completed a closure. The day after the first incision closing exercise, the residents were asked to do another repair using identical technique with the music either being turned on or off, in opposition to the first closure. They were not told that the researchers were comparing times or that the results would be graded until the study was completed.
"We recognized that our subjects could potentially improve on the second repair simply as the result of repetition," said author Dr. Shelby Lies, the UTMB chief plastic surgery resident. "This effect was reduced by randomly assigning the residents to music first or no music first groups."
The average repair completion time for all residents was 7 percent shorter when their preferred music was playing. This effect was magnified as the experience of the surgeon grew. Playing their preferred music led to a 10 percent reduction of repair time for senior residents as compared to an 8 percent time reduction seen in the junior residents.
The quality of the work was judged by plastic surgeons who did not know whose work they were analyzing or other conditions of the study. The judges' ratings confirmed an overall improvement in repair quality while music was played, regardless of whether the resident did the repair with their music first or second.  The residents were 'blinded' by not knowing why music was introduced to the surgery lab.
The report did not specify what music genre  was played.

Alessia Pedoto, MD in a report of music as a possible hazard in the operating room.  Noise levels were measured in the operating rooms. The noise levels approached 100 decibels. O.R. personel reported the cacaphony of sounds. 

Current research demonstrates that OR decibel levels
of constant or intermittent noise exceed the National
Institute of Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH)
limits for damaging noise at baseline without the additive
noise of music.   Furthermore, a 2013 study noted that
OR performance outcomes have been previously linked
to changes in mental loading such as task complexity and
workload at baseline noise levels without additive noise
effects such as music.

The UTMB study was performed in a surgical laboratory on animal pigs feet, (not a normal operating environment). This study may have no valid information regarding stiching times with music in the background.

  1. Shelby R. Lies, Andrew Y. Zhang. Prospective Randomized Study of the Effect of Music on the Efficiency of Surgical ClosuresAesthetic Surgery Journal, 2015; sju161 DOI: 10.1093/asj/sju161

When surgeons listen to their preferred music, their stitches are better and faster -- ScienceDaily

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