Prepare for Surgery, Heal Faster

This project has been completed

An independent initiative in affiliation with JEMI
Directed by Peggy Huddleston, MTS

A mind-body technique which has been demonstrated to speed post-surgical recovery and reduce hospital costs.

Prepare for Surgery, Heal Faster is a pre-surgical method developed by Peggy Huddleston. The method helps patients break through the perception that healing is strictly the realm of the physical and understand what they can do emotionally and spiritually to prepare for surgery.

“It offers the patient the ability to turn raw fear into profound peacefulness,” Peggy Huddleston, MTS, the project director, says of the program.

While patients use the program to overcome fears and cope with the stress of surgery, it often leads them to discover a deep peace within their being that is life changing. The program has been shown to reduce the use of pain medication by 23 to 50 percent, lessen post-surgical complications and speed recovery.

Since 1996, more than 200,000 people have benefited from this program, which is used in leading hospitals across the U.S., including NYU Medical Center and several Kaiser Permanente hospitals in northern California.

“I recommend this to all who require surgery and want to recover faster.”
-Dr. Andrew Weil

Clinical studies are currently underway at the New England Baptist Hospital, a Tufts and Harvard Medical School teaching hospital in Boston, Hartford Hospital in Connecticut and Kaiser Permanente’s Redwood City Medical Center in California.

Using five steps to prepare for surgery, patients learn how to become partners in their recovery by transforming fears into a profound peacefulness that boosts the immune system and enhances healing.

Elements of the program include:

  • Use of a relaxation audio tape to calm pre-operative jitters.
  • Visualization to turn worries into positive healing imagery.
  • Creating a support group of family and friends who mentally wrap the patient in a “blanket of love” prior to surgery.
  • Use of “Healing Statements,” words spoken by a doctor or nurse during surgery that reduce the use of pain medication by 23 to 50 percent;
  • Establishment of supportive doctor-patient relationships.

Peggy Huddleston, MTS, the project director, is a pioneer in mind-body medicine and the author of Prepare for Surgery, Heal Faster: A Guide of Mind-Body Techniques. A psychotherapist and researcher, she has been featured nationally on the PBS television program Body & Soul and in a recent book, Healing Spirits. She holds a Masters of Theological Studies from Harvard Divinity School. For more information visit