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Br J Nurs. 2013 Mar 14-27;22(5):S4, S6, S8-9.

Promoting enhanced recovery after colorectal surgery.

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  • St Marks Hospital, Middlesex, UK.


Enhanced recovery after surgery, also known as fast track surgery, involves the use of evidence-based care to improve the surgical process for patients and reduce the length of their hospital stay. The enhanced recovery elements are pre-operative, peri-operative and post-operative; each element can work alone, but better results are achieved when they are used in combination (Gustafsson et al, 2011). Enhanced recovery after surgery can assist patients undergoing various operations, most commonly colorectal, but also orthopaedic and gynaecological surgery. The government and local trusts are keen to optimise patient care and reduce the length of hospitalisation; however, there have been concerns about the possibility of increased readmission rates. A variety of issues related to enhanced recovery will be examined in this article, including the length of the primary hospital stay and readmission.

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