There are two principal aims in preparing the pediatric patient for operation. The first is to control his emotions and fears, or to prepare his mind, while the second is to put him in the best physical condition, or to prepare his body. Since methods at our disposal for reducing excitement can interfere with physiological well being, our two principal aims can conflict unless they are carefully balanced.
When the term "child" or "pediatric" is used, one may have a tendency to picture a normal 5- or 6-year-old boy as the typical child, or plan a standard approach and then attempt to apply it to all children. This would make life easy, but of course it is impossible. Pediatric patients differ tremendously from one another, and the approach used in preparation must be varied accordingly. To illustrate the necessity for this variable approach, I should like to present several different