Does a Great Playlist Improve Surgical Technique?

Posted on November 2, 2015 | by

Teen Girl Listening to MusicAsk any music lover, and they’ll tell you just how much of an impact music can have on your health and happiness. But can listening to music improve a surgeon’s efficiency in surgery? According to a recent study published in the Aesthetic Surgery Journal, the answer is yes!

The Study’s Findings: Good Music = Quicker, Better Work

In a 2011 study of surgeons in the UK, it was shown that at least 90% of plastic surgeons listen to music while operating—making them great test subjects for a study examining how music impacts surgical efficiency.

Researchers had 15 residents perform surgical closures with and without their personal music of choice—and the results were quite interesting! Residents who were listening to their preferred music took around 10% less time to perform surgical closures, thus cutting the overall operative time. Additionally, listening to great music also improved the quality of the repair.

Let the Music Play On

These results aren’t surprising. Many studies have been performed over the years to examine the positive benefits of listening to music, including reduced autonomic reactivity (physical response to stressful stimuli) in surgeons and improved performance under stressful circumstances.

Additionally, studies have also shown that patients who are exposed to music during surgery (even those under anesthesia!) are less anxious and require less pain medication during their recovery period.

To break it down, listening to music in the OR can result in:

  • 20% reduction of postoperative pain
  • 10% reduction in anxiety and stress
  • A significant reduction in patients’ use of pain medication
  • Increased surgical efficiency
  • Improved quality

Sounds like a win/win to us!

The Boston Plastic Playlist

Here at Boston Plastic Surgery, Dr. Samaha and his surgical staff love listening to a variety of tunes in the operating room. To keep the entire team happy, our tracklist is quite diverse. Some of us love rock, whether it’s indie, folk, or classic; others enjoy more contemporary pop hits, which always boosts the mood in the room.

Whatever we’re listening to, we’re thrilled to know that music is playing a positive role in your surgical experience. What are some of your favorite songs? Let us know in the comments below, and they just might make it on our playlist!

Whatever we’re listening to, we’re thrilled to know that music is playing a positive role in your surgical experience. What are some of your favorite songs? Let us know in the comments below, and they just might make our playlist!

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