IMR Press / JIN / Volume 22 / Issue 2 / DOI: 10.31083/j.jin2202030
Open Access Short Communication
Pilot Study: The Differential Response to Classical and Heavy Metal Music in Intensive Care Unit Patients under Sedo-Analgesia
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1 Clinical Neurophysiology, Hospital Universitario La Princesa, 28006 Madrid, Spain
2 Biomedical Research Institute, Hospital Universitario La Princesa, 28006 Madrid, Spain
3 Intensive Care Unit, Hospital Universitario de La Princesa, 28006 Madrid, Spain
*Correspondence: (Jesús Pastor)
J. Integr. Neurosci. 2023, 22(2), 30;
Submitted: 28 September 2022 | Revised: 3 December 2022 | Accepted: 6 December 2022 | Published: 10 February 2023
Copyright: © 2023 The Author(s). Published by IMR Press.
This is an open access article under the CC BY 4.0 license.

Background: Music is considered a valuable method for stimulating patients with disorders of consciousness (DOC) by enhancing their awareness and arousal. Although biographical music and auditory relative stimulation has been shown, responses to other types of music has not yet been addressed. The purpose of this study was to assess the brain responses in critically ill patients under sedo-analgesia to music that is highly different in features. Methods: We measured the individual responses to three types of music: classical (ClassM, Mozart), dodecaphonic (DodecM, Schönberg), and heavy metal (HeavyM, Volbeat) in six critically ill patients (one male, five female, all between 53 and 82 years old) with primary brain pathology under sedo-analgesia. We analyzed the changes in each patient’s electroencephalogram (EEG) band composition (delta, 1–4 Hz, theta 4–8 Hz, alpha 8–13 Hz, and beta 13–30 Hz) and synchronization throughout the scalp. Results: In spite of the heterogeneity in the responses, ClassM did not change the basal activity, although there was a tendency toward a decrease in brain activity. DodecM increased the alpha and beta bands from the right hemisphere. However, HeavyM increased the delta and theta bands from the frontal lobes and the alpha and beta bands from most of the scalp. No significant changes in synchronization were observed. Conclusions: Different types of music induce heterogeneous responses in the brain, suggesting that music interventions could affect the brain state of patients. HeavyM induced the greatest changes in brain responses, whereas ClassM showed a tendency to reduce brain activity. The result of this study opens the possibility of using different types of music as tools during the rehabilitation process.

classical music
dodecaphonic music
disorders of consciousness
fast Fourier transform
heavy metal music
Mozart's effect
quantified EEG
Fig. 1.
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