Music as an Auxiliary Analgesic During First Trimester Surgical Abortion: A Randomized Controlled Trial

J. M. Guerrero
P. M. Castano
E. O. Schmidt
L. Rosario
C. L. Westhoff


BACKGROUND: Music has served as an auxiliary analgesic in perioperative settings. This study evaluates the impact of intraoperative music added to routine pain control measures during first trimester surgical abortion. STUDY DESIGN: We analyzed data from 101 women randomized to undergo abortion with routine pain control measures only (ibuprofen and paracervical block) or with the addition of intraoperative music via headphones. The primary outcome was the change in preoperative and postoperative pain scores on a 100-mm visual analog scale. Secondary outcomes included change in anxiety and vital signs, and satisfaction. RESULTS: Baseline characteristics were similar between groups. The magnitude of increase in pain scores was greater in the intervention than in the control group (+51.0 mm versus +39.3 mm, p=.045). Overall pain control was rated as good or very good by 70% of the intervention and 75% of the control group (p=.65). CONCLUSIONS: Intraoperative music added to routine pain control measures increases pain reported during abortion.