Tzu-Ting Shu

Date Approved


Degree Type

Open Access Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)

Department or School


Committee Member

Lorraine M. Wilson, PhD, RN: Chair

Committee Member

Tsu-Yin Wu, PhD, RN: Committee Member


The purpose of this study was to test the effects of selected music on reducing postoperative pain and use of pain relief medications in open-heart surgery patients during chair rest on the first postoperative day.

This study was conducted using a pretest-posttest experimental design. A convenience sample of 13 open-heart surgery patients from a metropolitan hospital in southeastern Michigan were randomly assigned to the music group (n = 6) and the control group (n = 7). T-test analysis showed that pain scores (numeric rating scale, NRS = 0-10) were lower in the music group than the control group after 30, 45, and 60 minutes of chair rest, and sense of well-being rated by using the visual analog scale (VAS = 0-100) was also higher in the music group at 60 minutes than the control group although the difference was not statistically significant. Optimal duration of music to reduce postoperative pain and the frequency of the use of pain medication could not be determined due to the small sample size. A replication study with a larger study group is recommended to ensure greater statistical power to test the usefulness of music as an adjuvant therapy in reducing postoperative pain.