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Music in the ER Cuts Down on Kids' Stress

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Hearing the “Wheels on the Bus” a hundred times a day might cause parents a lot of pain, but when children hear that song (or any other) in the emergency room, it eases theirs. A new study finds that when kids listen to music in the ER it alleviates hurt and distress.

Researchers placed 42 children, ranging in age from 3 to 11, in one of two groups—one that listened to music while receiving an IV, and a set that did not hear tunes. The researchers evaluated how distressed the kids felt before and after the IV and had them rate their pain. The researchers found that children who did not listen to music rated their pain two points higher than those who did. The group listening to music also felt less stressed about the IV than the kids who didn't hear songs. 

Music even chills out parents and medical staff. The researchers found that parents whose kids heard music during their IV insertion felt more at ease, though it wasn’t a statistically significant finding. And tunes help medical professionals do their jobs better—76 percent of the medical staff in the music rooms felt it was very easy to insert the IV compared to only 38 percent in the quiet rooms. And 86 percent from the music room felt they did a great job inserting the IV compared to 48 percent from the tuneless rooms.

These findings show that something as simple and non-invasive as music can have a real impact on pain and stress during medical procedures. As the authors write in the paper that appears in July 15 online addition of JAMA Pediatrics, “Music may have a positive impact on pain and distress for children undergoing intravenous placement. Benefits were also observed for the parents and health care providers.” 

 

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photography
This Is What Flowers Look Like When Photographed With an X-Ray Machine
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Dr. Dain L. Tasker, “Peruvian Daffodil” (1938)

Many plant photographers choose to showcase the vibrant colors and physical details of exotic flora. For his work with flowers, Dr. Dain L. Tasker took a more bare-bones approach. The radiologist’s ghostly floral images were recorded using only an X-ray machine, according to Hyperallergic.

Tasker snapped his pictures of botanical life while he was working at Los Angeles’s Wilshire Hospital in the 1930s. He had minimal experience photographing landscapes and portraits in his spare time, but it wasn’t until he saw an X-ray of an amaryllis, taken by a colleague, that he felt inspired to swap his camera for the medical tool. He took black-and-white radiographs of everything from roses and daffodils to eucalypti and holly berries. The otherworldly artwork was featured in magazines and art shows during Tasker’s lifetime.

Selections from Tasker's body of work have been seen around the world, including as part of the Floral Studies exhibition at the Joseph Bellows Gallery in San Diego in 2016. Prints of his work are also available for purchase from the Stinehour Wemyss Editions and Howard Greenberg Gallery.

Dr. Dain L. Tasker, “Philodendron” (1938)
Dr. Dain L. Tasker, “Philodendron” (1938)

X-ray image of a rose.
Dr. Dain L. Tasker, “A Rose” (1936)

All images courtesy of Joseph Bellows Gallery.

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science
How Komodo Dragons Could One Day Help Save Your Life
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Some potential drugs and life-saving compounds are created in labs, but others exist in nature. In the American Chemical Society’s latest "Reactions" video below, you can learn how the bacteria-fighting peptide found in Komodo dragons' blood, the unique antibacterial compound found in Antarctic sea sponges, and the blue blood of horseshoe crabs—which clumps around invasive bacteria—are helping doctors develop new treatments and keep their patients safe.

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