An Empirical Investigation of the Anxiolytic and Pain Reducing Effects of Music


Psychology of Music




Two empirical experiments investigating the anxiety and pain reducing effects of listening to music via personal stereo following surgical procedures involving general anesthetic are reported. In Experiment 1, following minor surgery on the foot, 20 participants in an experimental group listened to music while 20 participants in a control group did not. Results indicate that the music group felt significantly less anxiety than the control group. No differences in pain measurements between the two groups were found. Experiment 2 involved a music listening group of 30 females and a no music control group of 28 females. Both groups underwent a total abdominal hysterectomy. Post-operative measures of pain, anxiety, and patient-controlled analgesia were taken. No differences between the groups were obtained on these measurements. Tables, graphs, and references are included.

Music and Health Institute Terms

Analgesic Intake; Anxiety; Hospital Setting; Medication Use; Music Listening; Music Medicine; Obstetrical/Gynecological Surgery; Orthopedic Surgery; Pain; Pain Management and Control; Pain Score or Rating; Postoperative Pain; Postoperative Patients; Recorded Music Listening; Self-Report Measures; Surgery; Surgical Patients

Indexed Terms

Anxieties; Surgery; Pain Management; Comparative Analysis

Study Type

Quasi-Experimental Study; Quantitative Methods

PubMed ID


Document Type