Perioperative nutrition offers significant opportunity for improvement

April 30, 2019

A wide ranging article in Anesthesiology News focuses on the state of perioperative nutrition.  The article references several studies and features quotes from leading nutrition researchers and clinicians.  The consensus is that perioperative nutrition is in dire straits and that changes should be made right away. Lack of nutrition expertise is said to be linked to a lack of education in medical school and residency.  Furthermore, nutritional interventions can be time consuming and are not well reimbursed. The experts recommend following recent ERAS nutrition guidelines which include preoperative screening, to focus on preoperative protein, feeding up to two hours pre-op with a carbohydrate drink, and earlier postoperative feeding when practical.  Building nutrition optimization protocols into standard preoperative preparation can best prepare patients for positive postoperative results.