Music may lessen the pain and anxiety of undergoing a prostate biopsy, according to a report published online in Urologia Internationalis.

Korean researchers led by Whi-An Kwon, MD, of the Wonkwang University Sanbon Hospital, Gunpo, randomly assigned 76 men undergoing transrectal ultrasound (TRUS)-guided prostate biopsy to hear classical music played during the procedure (38 men) or to hear no music (38 men). 

Prior to biopsy, lidocaine gel was instilled into the rectum. The researchers used the State-Trait Anxiety Inventory (STAI) to measure anxiety levels and a visual analog scale (0–10) to measure pain, satisfaction, and willingness to have a repeat TRUS-guided biopsy.

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Results showed that the mean anxiety score and mean pain score were significantly lower in the music group than the non-music group (40.9 vs. 47.6 and 4.66 vs. 6.29, respectively). The music group had significantly higher mean scores for satisfaction and willingness to undergo a repeat biopsy (7.42 vs. 6.18 and 7.42 vs. 5.34, respectively).

The authors concluded that music can serve as a simple, inexpensive, and effective adjunct to anesthesia during TRUS-guided prostate biopsy.