The purpose of this experimental study was to investigate the effect of preoperative individual interviews in addition to the regular group and incidental preoperative teaching, on preoperative and postoperative stress. This effect was measured by the Multiple Affect Adjective Check List (MAACL), number of postoperative analgesics, and number of postoperative catheterizations for urinary retention.

It was hypothesized that patients receiving the individual interview would (1) have lower preoperative MAACL scores on anxiety, hostility. and depression, (2) have lower postoperative MAACL scores on anxiety, hostility, and depression, (3) show a smaller difference between the preoperative and postoperative MAACL scores, (4) require less pain medication, (5) advance to oral analgesics sooner, and (6) require fewer catheterizations for postoperative urinary retention.

A total of 25 adult patients who had abdominal surgery was included in this study. Through random placement the control group had 12 subjects while there were 13 subjects in the experimental group. All the subjects were scheduled for surgery the following day. Everyone attended the group preoperative teaching class where a 15-minute film strip depicting general preoperative and postoperative events was shown, followed by a demonstration and practice of postoperative exercises. The subjects in the experimental group were interviewed by the investigator the evening before surgery in order to answer questions, clarify information, and discuss fears or concerns about surgery. After the interview they filled out the "Today" form of the MAACL. The control subjects had no added instruction before filling out the MAACL. The MAACL was given to all subjects on their third postoperative day. Analgesics and urinary catheterizations required during the first postoperative week were used as indirect measures of stress.

A one-tailed t test for significance was applied to the data from the two groups of patients. This showed the experimental group's preoperative MAACL scores were significantly lower than the control group's at a p<.05. No statistically significant difference was seen between the two groups for the other hypotheses presented.

It was concluded that the preoperative individual interview did lower the preoperative anxiety, hostility, and depression, but did not significantly effect the postoperative period for the patients studied.

LLU Discipline





Graduate School

First Advisor

L. Lucile Lewis

Second Advisor

Annette Ross

Third Advisor

Bruce Branson

Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)

Degree Level


Year Degree Awarded


Date (Title Page)




Library of Congress/MESH Subject Headings

Stress; Preoperative Care -- psychology; Postoperative Care -- psychology



Page Count

vi; 61

Digital Format


Digital Publisher

Loma Linda University Libraries

Usage Rights

This title appears here courtesy of the author, who has granted Loma Linda University a limited, non-exclusive right to make this publication available to the public. The author retains all other copyrights.


Loma Linda University Electronic Theses and Dissertations

Collection Website



Loma Linda University. Del E. Webb Memorial Library. University Archives