ASH: Listening to Music Daily Lowers Blood Pressure

Thirty minutes a day associated with significant reductions in blood pressure

THURSDAY, May 15 (HealthDay News) -- Listening to soothing music for just 30 minutes a day while performing controlled breathing exercises may significantly reduce high blood pressure, according to research presented at the American Society of Hypertension's 23rd Annual Scientific Meeting held May 14-17 in New Orleans.

Pietro A. Modesti, M.D., Ph.D., of the University of Florence in Italy, and colleagues randomized 48 patients between the ages of 45 and 70 to a control group or to an intervention group that listened to classical, Celtic and Indian (raga) music 30 minutes per day while conducting slow, controlled abdominal breathing exercises. Participants underwent ambulatory blood pressure monitoring at baseline, and at one and four weeks after treatment allocation.

Patients who listened to music experienced significant reductions in systolic blood pressure of a mean -3.2 and -4.4 mm Hg at one and four weeks, respectively, the report indicates. Only small, non-significant reductions in blood pressure were seen in the control group. The effect on systolic blood pressure was independent from heart rate changes since the two groups did not differ in mean heart rates, the researchers note.

These results "clearly illustrate the impact daily music listening has on ambulatory blood pressure. We are excited about the positive implications for both patients and physicians, who can now confidently explore music listening as a safe, effective, non-pharmacological treatment option or a complement to therapy," the authors conclude.

Abstract #132
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