Music may have multiple influences on the human organism. A possible therapeutic effect for patients with glaucoma has been postulated, aside from the known impact of music on the cardiovascular system, psychogenic effects and a short-term improvement in mental performance (Mozart effect). The higher level of mental stress in patients with glaucoma and type-A personality behaviour may be related to higher intraocular pressure in patients with glaucoma. Relaxing music may have a positive impact in these patients, related to a reduction in intraocular pressure or its fluctuations. However, only limited data exist on the effects of music on intraocular pressure. No clinical studies have yet been performed to investigate the effect of music or music therapy on glaucoma progression. The music of Mozart may influence visual field examinations, possibly due to a positive short term effect on mental performance. This factor needs to be addressed in studies dealing with the effect of music in glaucoma. The relevance of intraocular pressure increases in professional wind instrument players is controversial. An increased level of care might be advisable in patients with advanced glaucoma. The influences of music on humans, altered personality profiles in patients with glaucoma and the studies showing some effect of stress on intraocular pressure stress the relevance of psychological support for glaucoma patients, who are confronted with a disease with a high longterm risk of blindness.
Georg Thieme Verlag KG Stuttgart · New York.