| Music and Surgery: Another success
This past week, a dear friend of mine experienced a surgery that she was not looking forward to.
(But then, who does look forward to surgery?) She had known for some time that she needed to
have some large fibroid tumors removed, but did not think she would need a complete
hysterectomy until a month before she had it. We talked many times about how she would use
music before, during and after the surgery, but she had no idea how glad she would be that she
had it ready to go when she arrived at the hospital that morning. My friend had carefully chosen
Handel’s “Watermusic Suite” to have playing through headphones during the surgery, but almost
as soon as she arrived, things began to go awry. During the wait to be called back for getting into
a gown and getting the IV started, she began listening to her chosen music. When she was finally
called in, thee staff wouldn’t allow any family members to go with her although all she was doing
was changing clothes and she was clearly scared beyond what she expected. They finally did let
her sister and me go back but then informed her that they couldn’t find any of her pre-surgery
blood work and would have to do it all again! She turned up her music and stuck out her arm for
a repeat of the procedure she dreads so much. Shortly after that, a nurse came in telling her that
they had found the blood work from three days before. My friend almost started crying but
instead looked at us and pressed repeat on the CD Walkman.
Then the anesthesiologist arrived. She was a woman in her forties at most, and was
“all business.” There was no smile, no “how are you doing?” nothing. She even began to berate
my friend when informed that someone had donated blood for her, saying that she was sure they
wouldn’t use it unless it had been typed for an exact match. My friend said “but O+ is the
universal donor for other + types and the doctor glared and said “I know that!!!” It was like a
scene from a bad soap opera but my friend remained steadfast now with her trusty CD player
mostly obliterating the conversation that her sister and I were having with this physician.
Finally, the surgeon entered the room and she was as kind as could be. Soon, my
friend was wheeled away and the OR staff assured us they would change the CD to the recovery
music once the surgery was finished. This, they did. We never expected these kinks in the
process, but my friend has said that the music made such a difference in being able to tolerate
these difficulties and that in the recovery room, she was able to recognize the music she had
chosen. The familiarity provided comfort and reassurance to her that words could not have
provided. Studies continue to come out that document this anecdotal report. Please remember
this when you or a friend needs surgery. It is so easy and so worthwhile.
"Music for Surgery
" audio tapes are intended to help prepare you mentally, emotionally and spiritually for
surgery. They work well for the preop, operative and postop periods of your surgical experience.
I also offer links to amazing music for purchase through Amazon online that can also help
significantly. You won't believe the results!
Music for Surgery
by Dr. Alice Cash
by George Handel
by Claude Debussy
Paint the Sky with
September 5, 2004: “Music and healing through the lifespan,” Highland
Presbyterian Church, Louisville, KY 9:30 a.m. Free.
October, 2004 (exact date TBA): “The Healing Power of Music” place TBA
Louisville, KY and West Palm Beach Florida. Call 502-895-7688 for info.
October 15, 2004 “Toning and Chanting with Addictions,” Santa Fe, NM
contact 895-7688 for location and cost.
November 1, 2004 “Music as Medicine” Louisville Free Public Library,
Crescent Hill Branch. Contact: Debra Oberhausen
Branch Manager, Crescent Hill Library, Louisville Free Public Library, 2762 Frankfort Avenue,
Louisville, KY 40206. Phone 502-574-1793
December 2004 (exact date and place TBA) Louisville, KY. “Using Music to Fight
the Holiday Blues,” “Celebrating with Music” and
“Music and Anxiety: Neurotransmitters meet the Jitters” call 502-895-7688
Please check back as there are many pending seminars around the country.
Inquire about savings for your group or association if I am already in your part of the country!
Dr. Cash is featured in this interesting Alternative
Medicine article by Linda Stahl in the Courier-Journal, Louisville,
Kentucky, March 11, 2004.
As always, Dr. Cash will set up workshops in Louisville and surrounding areas at special request
if a minimum of 10-12 people can be assured.
“Using music with the autistic child”
“Music as a Pathway to Higher Power”
“Wellness through Music: Ten Top Tips”
“Music and Childbirth: the Lullaby Project
| Healing Music Services and
Purchase tapes, CD, and books by Dr. Cash, and others
Please feel free to forward this issue to
friends and associates. Anyone can subscribe for free (see below)
Alice H. Cash, Ph.D., LCSW
Healing Music Enterprises
(502) 895-7688 (502) 419-1698 (mobile)
(502) 896-7277 (fax)