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Journal of the Korean Society of Coloproctology 1998;14(3):605-610.
Safety of Early Postoperative Feeding after Elective Colorectal Surgery.
Yoo, Chang Oh , Lee, Kyoung Keun , Lee, Jeong Kyun
Introduction: Several investigators demonstrated that routine nasogastric decompression after abdominal surgery was unnecessary and can be safely eliminated. Some authors suggested that early feeding could be tolerated by the majority of patients after elective colorectal surgery. PURPOSE
The aim of our study was to prospectively assess the safety and tolerability of early oral feeding after colorectal surgery.
This trial included 69 patients who underwent an colon or rectal operation between April 1997 and August 1998. Patients were randomized after the operative procedure into one of two groups. Group 1: early oral feeding-all patents received a clear liquid diet on the first postoperative day followed by a regular diet as tolerated. Group 2: delayed feeding-all patients were treated in the traditional way with feeding only after the resolution of their postoperative ileus. Both groups had intraoperative nasogastric tubes that were removed at the end of surgery. The patients were monitored for vomiting, nasogastric tube reinsertion, time of regular diet consumption, complication, and length of hospitalization. The nasogastric tube was reinserted if two or more episodes of vomiting of more than 100 ml occurred in the absence of bowel movement.
Sixty-nine consecutive patients were studied, 34 patients in group 1 (12 males and 22 females, mean age 58.1+/-12.7), and 35 patients in group 2 (16 males and 19 females, mean age 58.5+/-12.7). Significant differences were not noted in age and type of procedures. No significant differences were seen in rates of vomiting and overall complications. However, early feeding group well tolerated a regular diet (postoperative period to take regular diet of group 1: 5.4+/-4.0 days, group 2 : 8.1+/-4.6 days, p=0.013), and were discharged from hospital significantly earlier than the delayed feeding group(group 1: 14.0+/-5.1 days, group 2: 19.1+/-8.6 days, p=0.004).
Early feeding after colorectal surgery is successfully tolerated by the majority of patients and led to earlier hospital discharge.
Key Words: Early feeding; Colorectal surgery


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