• day surgery;
  • information provision;
  • anxiety management

While the quality of medical intervention associated with day surgery has greatly improved, the position of psychological preparation has remained virtually unchanged. Recent evidence, however, has suggested that anxiety levels can be significantly reduced if preparatory information can be matched with individual coping styles. As choice of coping style has been strongly linked with locus of control, two questionnaires were given to 150 subjects undergoing minor gynaecological day surgery in order to compare their health locus of control (HLC) with their preferred level of preparatory information. No correlation was established between the HLC measures and the selected level of preparatory information although information requirements were established. The results are discussed and recommendations made for future pre-operative psycho-educational programmes.