By Emily Mee, news reporter

"Music has charms to sooth a savage breast," the poet William Congreve said back in 1697.

We have long known about music's soothing qualities, but researchers now claim it could be just as effective as drugs for calming patients.

A clinical trial in the US compared the levels of anxiety felt by patients who were prescribed the drug midazolam and others who were told to listen to music.

Those involved in the study were having a type of regional anaesthetic, or peripheral nerve block.

Researchers split 157 adults into two groups, with the first being given 1mg to 2mg of midazolam, which was injected three minutes before the peripheral nerve block.


The other group were given noise-cancelling headphones and listened to English band Marconi Union's Weightless – which has been described as the "world's most relaxing song".

According to Forbes, the band collaborated with a therapist to produce the ultra-relaxing tune, which aims to lower the listener's blood pressure, stress levels and heart rate.

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Pre-operative anxiety is common and can raise levels of stress hormones in the body, affecting its ability to recover after surgery, according to a team from the University of Pennsylvania writing in the journal Regional Anesthesia and Pain Medicine.

The study scored patients' levels of anxiety following the two treatments – and found participants who had listened to music were just as relaxed as those who were given the sedative.

However, patients in tRead More – Source

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