Effet de la musique sur l'agitation post-traumatique de patients ayant subi un traumatisme craniocérébral


Nathalie Gosselin

Université de Montréal


Domaine : neurosciences, santé mentale et toxicomanies

Consortium pour le développement de la recherche en traumatologie - volet 2

Concours 2015-2016

Post-traumatic agitation is a severe behavioral problem characterized by excessive behaviors (e.g. aggressiveness, motor hyperactivity). Its incidence in victims of traumatic brain injury (TBI) is estimated between 35% and 70%. The treatment of post-traumatic agitation presents an important challenge and current interventions (e.g. pharmacological) are not shown to be particularly effective.

Past research on neurocognitive disorder patients (e.g., due to Alzheimer's disease) shows the beneficial effects of music listening on agitation. It is suggested that this positive effect would come from the capacity of music to calm, to induce pleasant emotions and memories as well as to create a familiar environment. No study about the impact of music on adult TBI agitation exists so far. Thus, this pilot project aims to measure the effectiveness of a music listening intervention on TBI patients. To do so, eight patients in a state of post-traumatic agitation will be recruited. They will be presented with preferred relaxing music selected by their relatives (musical condition), a control condition (waterfall-like sounds) and baselines (no sound). Objective measures of agitation state will be taken through the observation of agitated behaviours and actigraphy (measure of motor agitation). It is predicted that listening to preferred relaxing music will reduce post-traumatic agitation.

This pilot study represents the first step which will allow the development of a new non-pharmacological intervention, that will be accessible and affordable. Finally, this innovative intervention will contribute to optimizing the TBI patients' recovery and improving patient, relative, and health care practitioner well-being and security. This study will be possible on behalf of a research team consisting of researchers and clinicians who have complementary expertise (e.g. trauma, post-traumatic agitation, neurocognition of music).