Posts Tagged 'SciAm'

Music and Medicine

Seems music therapy is getting more attention these days. I wonder if Sacks’ latest book, Musicophilia, has anything to do with the press.

SciAm recently reported that depressed patients feel happier after listening to Beethoven.

Similarly, the NYT published a recent article about Claudius Conrad, an MD PhD surgeon at Harvard who’s investigating the biochemical nature of the Mozart-induced. Jonah Lehrer (The Frontal Cortex) comments.

The study itself was fairly simple. The researchers fitted 10 postsurgical intensive-care patients with headphones, and in the hour just after the patients’ sedation was lifted, 5 were treated to gentle Mozart piano music while 5 heard nothing.

The patients listening to music showed several responses that Dr. Conrad expected, based on other studies: reduced blood pressure and heart rate, less need for pain medication and a 20 percent drop in two important stress hormones, epinephrine and interleukin-6, or IL-6. Amid these expected responses was the study’s new finding: a 50 percent jump in pituitary growth hormone.

Interesting stuff, though, Dr. Conrad seems a little full of himself:

Thus, future studies are necessary to investigate how this beneficial effect of music can be further integrated clinically, both for patient and for physician.[13,14]

That’s my opinion. I am Dr. Claudius Conrad, Senior Surgical Resident, Harvard Medical School, Massachusetts General Hospital.



Genetic Nondescrimination Act

was just passed into law.  Health insurance companies won’t be able to discriminate based on genetic testing.

(via SciAm)