Effects of Tibetan Music on Neuroendocrine and Autonomic Functions in Patients Waiting for Surgery: A Randomized, Controlled Study

Anesthesiol Res Pract. 2018 Mar 5;2018:9683780. doi: 10.1155/2018/9683780. eCollection 2018.


Background: The aim of this study was to investigate the effects of listening to Tibetan music on anxiety and endocrine, autonomic, cognitive responses in patients waiting for urologic surgery.

Methods: Sixty patients waiting for surgery were enrolled to the study. They were randomized in music (M) and control (C) groups. The M group listened to a low-frequency Tibetan music for 30 min (T0-T30) through headphones, and the C group wore headphones with no sound. The State Trait Anxiety Inventory Questionnaire (STAI) Y-1 was administered at T0 and T30. Normalized low (LFnu) and high frequencies (HFnu) of heart rate variability, LF/HF ratio, and galvanic skin response (GRS) data were analyzed at T0, T10, T20, T30, and T35. The salivary α-amylase (sAA) samples were collected at T0, T35, and T45.

Results: In the M group, the STAI Y-1 score decreased at T30 versus baseline (p < 0.001), sAA levels decreased at T35 versus T0(p=0.004), and GSR remained unchanged. In the C group, the STAI Y-1 score remained unchanged, sAA level increased at T35 versus T0(p < 0.001), and GSR slightly increased at T35 versus baseline (p=0.359). LFnu was lower, and HFnu was significantly higher (T10-T30) in M versus C group. Mean LF/HF ratio slightly reduced in the M group.

Conclusions: Our results suggest that preoperative listening to relaxing Tibetan music might be a useful strategy to manage preoperative anxiety.