The present study sought to ameliorate two major deficiencies in the literature on treating response to surgery, viz., (1) the failure to compare clearly delineated treatments, alone and in combination; and (2) the failure to examine treatment × coping style interactions. Information imparting and brief relaxation were examined in this study as they interacted with an avoidance-sensitization coping style. No differences were found between treatments or coping styles. Sensitizers, on the other hand, were found to profit most from the relaxation training. Avoiders appeared to do well when they were left alone. The interaction effect was demonstrated for both self-report measures of pain and a behavioral measure of potency of medications ingested. The effects on self-report of pain were more evident on the second postsurgical day than on the fourth postsurgical day. The results indicate that brief relaxation training, often the only kind available to the medical psychologist dealing with surgical patients, is best confined to patients with a sensitizing coping style. Further, the results of this study, in conjunction with a reanalysis of previous studies, cast considerable doubt on information imparting when presented alone as a viable technique for reducing the distress consequent on surgery.