A Review of Enhanced Recovery After Surgery Principles Used for Scheduled Caesarean Delivery

Jeffrey Huang, Cathy Cao, Gregg Nelson, R Douglas Wilson
Journal of Obstetrics and Gynaecology Canada: JOGC 2019, 41 (12): 1775-1788
There is an increasing body of evidence to support the success of Enhanced Recovery After Surgery (ERAS) for a wide range of surgical procedures. There has been little formalized application, however, of ERAS principles in obstetrical surgery. The aim of this review was to examine the evidence base of perioperative care for patients undergoing Caesarean delivery (CD) and to determine the feasibility of developing an ERAS Society guideline for this obstetrical care plan. The literature on enhanced recovery programs was reviewed, including fast-track surgery and perioperative care components in the preoperative, intraoperative, and postoperative phases of CD. These studies included randomized controlled trials (RCTs), prospective cohort studies, non-RCT studies, meta-analyses, systematic reviews, reviews, and case studies. This is not a systematic review because each ERAS topic area would require a new question. Certain ERAS elements have the potential to benefit patients undergoing CD. These elements include patient education, preoperative optimization, prophylaxis against thromboembolism, antimicrobial prophylaxis, postoperative nausea and vomiting prevention, hypothermia prevention, perioperative fluid management, postoperative analgesia, ileus prevention, breastfeeding promotion, and early mobilization. ERAS has the potential to be successfully implemented in CD on the basis of the evidence obtained from this review. Knowledge transfer and implementation will require multidisciplinary coordination in the preoperative, intraoperative, and postoperative phases and the development of a formalized ERAS guideline.

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