A randomized controlled trial of a regular diet as the first meal in gynecologic oncology patients undergoing intraabdominal surgery.
OBJECTIVE: To prospectively evaluate the safety and efficacy of a regular diet as the first meal after intraabdominal surgery in gynecologic oncology patients. METHODS: During a 20-month period, 254 gynecologic oncology patients undergoing intraabdominal surgery were enrolled in a randomized controlled trial of a clear liquid diet compared with a regular diet as the first postoperative meal. All patients received their first meal on the first postoperative day in the absence of nausea, vomiting, or symptomatic abdominal distension. Standard criteria for discharge were used for all study patients. RESULTS: The clear liquid and the regular diet groups were similar in age, disease, surgical procedure distribution, surgery length, and estimated blood loss. The incidence of nausea, vomiting, abdominal distention, frequency and duration of nasogastric tube use, passage of flatus before discharge, and percentage of patients who tolerated their diets on the first attempt were comparable for both groups. For those patients who were intolerant of the first attempt at either a clear liquid or regular diet, the time to tolerance was comparable for both groups. The time to development of bowel sounds, passage of flatus, and hospital stay were comparable for both groups. Febrile morbidity, pneumonia, wound complications, and atelectasis occurred equally in both groups. There were no known anastamotic complications or aspirations in either group. Postoperative changes in hematologic indices and electrolytes were comparable in both groups. CONCLUSION: A regular diet as the first meal after intraabdominal surgery in gynecologic oncology patients is safe and efficacious.
Pearl, ML; Frandina, M; Mahler, L; Valea, FA; DiSilvestro, PA; Chalas, E
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