The ERAS Protocol is at the forefront of the peri-operative pathway in colorectal surgery: monocentric clinical study
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Introduction. Colon cancer is one of the most common neoplastic diseases, with onset in old age; the benefits of the ERAS protocol were evaluated in the peri-operative treatment of patients affected by this neoplasm. Methods. We studied 90 cases of colorectal neoplasia observed at the General Surgery UOC of the San Camillo de Lellis Hospital between September 2014 and April 2016, undergoing laparoscopic surgery and to which the ERAS protocol was applied; key points were the preoperative oral feeding, the epidural anesthesia, the reduced or failed hydro-electrolytic overload, the early mobilization and recovery of the feeding, the non-use of drainage. The most important parameers considered were the reduced duration of the operating hospital stay, the lower occurrence of early and distant complications. Results. 85 surgical procedures were performed with laparoscopic technique (94.4%) and 5 with traditional open technique (5.6%). The conversion rate was 5.8% (5/85). 29 surgical procedures of right hemicolectomy (32.2%) and 26 of anterior resection of the rectum (28.9%) were performed; in another 29 patients (32.2%) an intervention with an open traditional technique was performed. A balanced anesthesia was performed in 41 patients (45.6%); epidural anesthesia in 32 cases (35.6%); the Tap Block in 17 subjects (18.9%). The average volume of liquid infusion was 1664cc ± 714; the average post-operative hospital stay of 4.3 ± 0.9 days. Conclusions. The ERAS protocol reduces the duration of the post-operative hospitalization, involves a lower incidence of precocious and remote complications, in particular if associated with a minimally invasive surgical method; it is easily applicable and reproducible in a hospital environment, with a marked reduction in healthcare management costs.
KEY WORDS: ERAS - Colorectal cancer - Fast-track surgery - Laparoscopy - Post-operative hospitalization