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April 12, 1995

Cardiovascular Reactivity Among Surgeons: Not Music to Everyone's Ears

Author Affiliations

Cedars-Sinai Medical Center Los Angeles, Calif

JAMA. 1995;273(14):1091. doi:10.1001/jama.1995.03520380026024

To the Editor.  —In nearly half a century spent in operating rooms, most of it as director of surgery in a large teaching hospital, I was convinced that music of any kind in the operating room detracted from the intensity of purpose and attentiveness mandatory in that setting. During my frequent operating room rounds, I would hear all types of music, ranging from rock to Bach. At times, the noise level emanating from the anesthetist's boom box was loud enough to drown out any meaningful communication between surgeon and scrub nurse. I forbade the playing of music during resident teaching, not only because I felt that it taught a bad habit, but also because it diluted the teaching experience.Music hath charms, but there should be no savage beasts in the operating rooms. I hope the article by Drs Allen and Blascovich,1 whose tests were performed far from the

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