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Saudi J Anaesth. 2019 Jul-Sep;13(3):184-190. doi: 10.4103/sja.SJA_720_18.

Preoperative fasting: Assessment of the practices of Lebanese Anesthesiologists.

Author information

Department of Anesthesiology and Critical Care Unit, Hotel Dieu de France Hospital, Saint Joseph University, Beirut, Lebanon.



Although new guidelines developed by the American Society of Anesthesiologists (ASA) recommend a liberalized preoperative nutrition, authorized clinical practice guidelines or recommendations have not yet been proposed by the Lebanese Society of Anesthesia (LSA).


The purpose of this study was to examine Lebanese anesthesiologists' preoperative fasting routines and determine their knowledge and acceptance of the ASA recommendations, their attitude toward liberalized fasting, and the factors favoring their nonadherence to the new recommendations.

Materials and Methods:

This study was conducted in university hospitals, affiliated hospitals, and nonuniversity hospitals located in different regions of Lebanon. The survey was approved by the local ethics committee. A written questionnaire was emailed to all anesthesiologist members of the LSA which was completed anonymously.


Out of the 294 anesthesiologists registered in the LSA and who read the email, 118 (40.1%) completed the questionnaire. Of respondents, 90% are aware of the latest ASA practice guidelines for preoperative fasting, and 78.7% claim to apply them in their practices; however, 75% of respondents still require adult patients to stop eating after midnight, and only 45% allow them to drink clear fluids up to 2 h preoperatively. One of the main reasons for not complying with the ASA guidelines was "to allow flexibility for changes in the operating schedule."


A long preoperative fasting period is still the common practice for Lebanese anesthesiologists. National guideline for preoperative fasting as liberal as that recommended by the ASA should be considered.


Preoperative fasting; recommendations; survey

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