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Clinical Services: Adult through Geriatric

Music & Health Clinic

Image: Louis Armstrong

About the Health Care Needs of Musicians and Performing Artists
Musicians and performing artists have specific medical and health needs related to the unique physical, mental and emotional demands of their profession. Performance can be stifled by overuse injuries, scar tissue from surgical procedures, anxiety, chronic fatigue, focusing difficulties and various side effects of medication such as tendon inflammation. Furthermore, performers report a high incidence of depression and chemical dependency.

Music & Health Clinic Services for Musicians and Performing Artists
The mission of the Music and Health Clinic is to provide musicians and performing artists with health services tailored to their unique needs that include state-of-the-art techniques of music psychotherapy and healing. The Music & Health Clinic provides special services to several unique populations and is supported by a generous gift from the David B. Kriser Foundation and through the estate of John H. Slade, directed to Beth Israel from hospital Trustee Richard Netter with additional support from the Louis Armstrong Educational Foundation. Musicians and performing artists may receive low-cost medical treatment in conjunction with select, specialized music therapy services. Our clinic's medical director, Dr. Stephan Quentzel, specializes in integrative medicine and psychiatry, blending a medical-bio-music approach to address the unique ailments specific to performing artists and musicians. The Clinic's interdisciplinary team of medical professionals and music therapists provide traditional medicine with complementary mind-body approaches.

Our music therapy team is trained in specialized techniques to address specific cognitive psychomotivational aspects of depression, chemical dependency, chronic fatigue and anxiety as well as complementary approaches such as music-assisted relaxation, guided visualization and stress management that address the physical symptoms of overuse injuries to alleviate pain. It is the program's goal to use the familiar and creative medium of music in a therapeutic context to provide musicians and performing artists with an empowering, dynamic healing environment that is easily accessible.

Our Clinic's special services include ongoing evaluation and state-of-the art distinctive treatments of respiratory diseases including asthma in children and teens, and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease in adults. A final growing specialty in the clinic is providing children with attention deficit difficulties (with or without hyperactivity) with individual music psychotherapy sessions.

Menu of Music & Medicine Services

  • 60-minute office consultation by Dr. Stephan Quentzel, MD
    Comprehensive history & physical; review & evaluation of chief complaint; treatment modalities reviewed
  • 45-minute music therapy assessment by Dr. Joanne Loewy, DA, MT-BC
    Full music history, music psychotherapy evaluation. Performance history, music treatment modalities assessed
  • Follow-up medical treatment sessions include referrals to our team of consulting physicians covering a wide range of specialties including neurology, acupuncture, spinal cord conditions, pulmonology, pain medicine & palliative care, neuromuscular and electromyography neurology, rehabilitation and internal medicine. Click here to go to listing of our consultation team. (Identify link)
  • Follow-up Music Services include exceptional treatments by our team of consulting music therapists. Services include:
    • Music Ergonomic-Posturing: Analyses of the playing, positioning and environment that one plays music both in solo and group contexts have important implications. Adjusting and/or altering the way music is played and the musical environment in which one plays may assist in the avoidance of overuse that contributes to repetitive strain injury. Music holds inherent systems of order which may provide a means for compatible enhancement in both the strengths and limitations of physical and emotional strains of the musician.
    • Music Visualization: The use of live or recorded music particularly catered to create an induced, relaxed mind and body can alter one's perception of tension and evoke the potential of useful inner resources.
    • Vibration: Vibratory instruments, such as the gong, tone bars, and the use of toning, can alter the perception of pain and/or anxiety.
    • Music and Breath Entrainment: Tension, fatigue and fear tend to cause physical constriction and emotional contraction in the body and mind. Music, within its capacity to create flow and in its ability to enhance a feeling of space through the extension of open phrasing, can ease the fear and constraints of breathing. Wind-playing provides a viable means whereby the breath can be consciously connected to intention. Elongation of musical phrases through melodic and harmonic entrainment can extend and increase the volume and capacity to breathe, enhancing homeostasis.  
    • Clinical Music Improvisation: Creating spontaneous live music for oneself or with a music therapist on an instrument that is either familiar or unknown can provide a spontaneous forum that uncovers intra-psychic tendencies. Clinical improvisation may give insight to the unconscious issues related to the non-musical self, and the relationship tendencies that are often encapsulated by the role one tends to assign to the music.
    • Tonal Intervallic Synthesis: Tones and sounds in the implementation of specific intervals have the capacity to sense dissonance and create consonance.
    • Rhythmic Release: Repetitive rhythms, drumming, triplet metered holding in both structured and non-structured musical motifs, may provide a physical/emotional/spiritual sense of tension release.
    • Music Psychotherapy: Using music and the context of a musical relationship can provide opportunity for self-growth and insight. Analyzing and making conscious one's relationship with music, musical others and the subtle referential role that music and the musician tend to play in everyday living can be life-changing.   
  • Music Group (select and open/monthly): Music groups will be offered at the Clinic to serve various needs. Groups include:
    • Drumming
    • Toning
    • Wind-playing/Breath expansion
    • Music visualization

Music & Health Clinic Staff

Joanne Loewy, DA, MT-BC, Director
Music Therapy Assessment
Music Sub-Specialty Services

Stephan Quentzel, MD, Medical Director
Psychiatry, Family Medicine, Integrative Medicine

Stephen Petro, Administrator

Carolyn Patterson, Executive Assistant

Music & Health Clinic Consultation Team
Lisa Auerbach, MD, FACP
Internal Medicine, Union Square Medical Group

Ronit Azoulay, MA, MT-BC
Music for Advances In Respiration (AIR)
Music for Cardiac Advances in Rehabilitation (CAIR)

Ricardo Cruciani, MD, PhD
Neurology, Psychiatry
Pain Medicine and Palliative Care

Lori Garjian, MD
Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation
Medical Acupuncture

Brian Harris, MT-BC
Music Therapy Outreach

Ronald Hoffman, MD
Otology: Cochlear Implants and Balance Disorders Specialties

Glenn Kashan, MD
Internal Medicine, Union Square Medical Group

Peter McCann, MD
Orthopedic Surgery: Shoulder and Elbow Specialty

Charles Melone, MD
Orthopaedic Surgery: Hand Specialty

Mark Persky, MD
Otolaryngology, Head and Neck Surgery

Russell Portenoy, MD
Pain Medicine and Palliative Care

Jonathan Raskin, MD, FCCP
Internal Medicine and Respiratory Diseases

Erica Rondina, MA, MT-BC
Asthma Initiative Program, Music Wellness

Stephen Scelsa, MD
Neuromuscular Division and Electromyography Neurology

Robert Sheu, MD
Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation
Interventional Pain Medicine and Palliative Care Specialties

David Shulkin, MD
Internal Medicine, Union Square Medical Group

Related Research and Articles
For articles from peer-reviewed journals, research studies and authoritative literature, please see the bibliographies in the Suggested Reading section. Additional information is available through Websites listed on the Related Links page.

For Questions and Further Information
For questions and further information about music therapy or referrals for yourself, your loved ones or your patients, please call (212) 420-2704 or email info@musicandmedicine.org.

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