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Adv Urol. 2008:507543. doi: 10.1155/2008/507543.

Fast track open partial nephrectomy: reduced postoperative length of stay with a goal-directed pathway does not compromise outcome.

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  • 1Urology Service, Saint Peter's Cancer Care Center, and Department of Surgery, Albany Medical College, Albany, NY 12208, USA.


Introduction. The aim of this study is to examine the feasibility of reducing postoperative hospital stay following open partial nephrectomy through the implementation of a goal directed clinical management pathway. Materials and Methods. A fast track clinical pathway for open partial nephrectomy was introduced in July 2006 at our institution. The pathway has daily goals and targets discharge for all patients on the 3rd postoperative day (POD). Defined goals are (1) ambulation and liquid diet on the evening of the operative day; (2) out of bed (OOB) at least 4 times on POD 1; (3) removal of Foley catheter on the morning of POD 2; (4) removal of Jackson Pratt drain on the afternoon of POD 2; (4) discharge to home on POD 3. Patients and family are instructed in the fast track protocol preoperatively. Demographic data, tumor size, length of stay, and complications were captured in a prospective database, and compared to a control group managed consecutively immediately preceding the institution of the fast track clinical pathway. Results. Data on 33 consecutive patients managed on the fast track clinical pathway was compared to that of 25 control patients. Twenty two (61%) out of 36 fast track patients and 4 (16%) out of 25 control patients achieved discharge on POD 3. Overall, fast track patients had a shorter hospital stay than controls (median, 3 versus 4 days; P = .012). Age (median, 55 versus 57 years), tumor size (median, 2.5 versus 2.5 cm), readmission within 30 days (5.5% versus 5.1%), and complications (10.2% versus 13.8%) were similar in the fast track patients and control, respectively. Conclusions. In the present series, a fast track clinical pathway after open partial nephrectomy reduced the postoperative length of hospital stay and did not appear to increase the postoperative complication rate.

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