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The effects of auditory stimulation with music on heart rate variability in healthy women


OBJECTIVES: It lacks in the literature the acute effects of different styles of music on the geometric indices of heart rate variability (HRV). We aimed to evaluate the acute effects of relaxant baroque and excitatory heavy metal music on those indices in women. METHODS: The study was performed in 21 healthy women between 18 and 30 years old. We excluded persons with previous experience with music instrument and those who had affinity with the song styles. The volunteers were exposed to baroque or heavy metal music for five minutes through an earphone. After the first music exposure they remained at rest for more five minutes and them they were exposed again to Baroque or Heavy Metal music (70-80 dB). A different group of women were exposed to the same music in addition to white noise auditory stimulation (90dB). The sequence of songs was randomized for each individual. We analyzed the following indices: RRtri, TINN and Poincaré plot (SD1, SD2 and SD1/SD2 ratio), LF, HF, LF/HF ratio, SDNN, RMSSD and pNN50. HRV was recorded at rest for ten minutes. RESULTS: The RRTri and SD2 indices were reduced during the both styles of music in the first group and tended to decrease in the second group while the white noise exposure decreased the HF index. No changes were observed regarding TINN, SD1 and SD1/SD2 ratio. CONCLUSION: We suggest the relaxant baroque and excitatory heavy metal music slightly decrease global HRV due to the equivalent sound level. (AU)

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