They Sense A Disturbance: How 'Star Wars' Music Is Helping These Australian Doctors Find Bowel Cancer


It has been proven time and again that music can play a huge part in a person's productivity and that observation is echoed once again in a new study. A group of doctors from a Melbourne hospital showed that listening to "Star Wars" music increased their accuracy in detecting polyps during endoscopy.

The results may be a bit surprising since increased productivity and accuracy are usually attributed to those who listened to classical music while performing a task, but the team composed of doctors Zaid SM Ardalan, Simon Hew, Steve Lontos, Julien Schulberg and Abhinav Vasudevan seemed to have tapped into The Force and hypothesized that the soundtrack of "Star Wars" would do a better job in detecting polyps that lead to cancer.

The doctors are not proposing a list of music to be played during procedures because there is already an existing one, but they noted the lack of music from the soundtrack of epic films with uplifting musical tracks. Since they are all avid fans of the "Star Wars" films by George Lucas and the excitement from the "Star Wars: The Force Awakens" seems to have affected them, they decided to put the study together after gaining approval from the Austin Health Human Research Ethics Committee.

"We hypothesized that 'Star Wars' music (SWM) would be superior to endoscopist-selected popular music (PM) when measuring quality outcomes in colonoscopy," the authors of the study wrote.

"The Padawans were supervised by a Jedi Master endoscopist for each procedure and advised to use the Force, and not force, during the colonoscopy," they assured.

So what are the results? They found that the endoscopists who listened to "Star Wars" music were able to detect more polyps and remove these faster than the group which listened to the other playlist consisting of popular music chosen by endoscopists.

There's a snag, though. The group didn't test musical soundtracks from other epic films so it's really not definite whether the improvement in detection rate has to do with the music being from the "Star Wars" soundtrack.

"The Value of Audio Devices in the Endoscopy Room," or VADER, was published in The Medical Journal of Australia on Dec. 14.

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