Intravaginal Device Can Detect Fetal Deafness Interview with:

Dr. Álex García-Faura Scientific Director of the Institut Marquès Spain


Dr. Álex García-Faura
Scientific Director of the Institut Marquès
Spain What is the background for this study? What are the main findings?

Response: Our clinical research during the last three years has been focused on the effects of music during the early stages of life; in our preliminary studies, applying music to pregnant patients using abdominal speakers, we discovered that there was no fetal reaction to music and that the fetus would only be able to hear it as a distorted whisper because of the effects of the abdominal wall. We thought that it would be necessary to get the music closer to the fetus, and we decided to try to apply the music vaginally. It was a great decision. What should readers take away from your report?
• The study demonstrates that a foetus of 16 weeks (11cm long) is already capable of properly hearing and responding to music as long as it is emitted from the mother’s vagina.
• The foetus can hardly hear sound from an external source and from its mother. It perceives it in a whispered, distorted form.
• In the case of music emitted from the vagina, 87% of foetuses move their mouths or tongues and almost half pull out their tongues as far as they will go. They perform vocalisation movements prior to the acquisition of language.
• The device developed for the study enables foetal deafness to be ruled out. It also makes ultrasound scans easier and reduces the stress of parents during pregnancy. What recommendations do you have for future research as a result of this study?

Response: We think that further studies should be performed during pregnancy using intravaginal music stimulation, including post-natal follow-up of these children to investigate if we can get a better development of skills related to speech, language or communication. Thank you for your contribution to the community.


Data presented at the 25th European Congress of Perinatal Medicine in Maastricht, Netherlands on Wednesday.

Note: Content is Not intended as medical advice. Please consult your health care provider regarding your specific medical condition and questions.

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Last Updated on June 22, 2016 by Marie Benz MD FAAD