Enhanced Recovery After Surgery, or ERAS® as it’s known in the medical field (pronounced ee-raz), is a program that follows 17 key elements which work together to make for safer surgeries and better surgery recovery for patients. (Psst..if you didn’t catch our breakdown on what ERAS is all about, you can find that here.) The goal of ERAS is to benefit both patients and hospitals by taking a multi-pronged approach to caring for patients throughout their entire surgery journey. With an array of research pointing to endless benefits, it’s no surprise this effective surgery protocol program is becoming increasingly popular. Read on for 3 reasons hospitals around the world are kicking outdated surgery prep to the curb and making the surgery-smart shift to effective ERAS programs instead.
- The research is in.
As decades go by, we learn more and more about the human body, and medical practices advance as a result. One of the places this is most apparent is in the field of surgery—a slew of modern medical research points to a finding that flips antiquated surgery prep on its head: by making a plan to care for our bodies before surgery (rather than simply fasting from midnight, setting up a ride home, and calling it a day), we can increase our chance of safer surgeries and better surgery recovery. Research shows that following the 17 elements of an ERAS program ultimately “reduces the stress of the operation” and leads to:
- Reduced length-of-stay of up to 50%
- Reduced rates of surgical complications
- Higher patient satisfaction scores (HCAHPS)
- Lower rates of re-admittance
- Lower costs
- It’s good for the hospital—and great for the patient.
Better surgery recovery benefits everyone: Hospitals reduce their costs by decreasing re-admittance rates and shortening the length of stay after surgery—while patients see benefits like a reduced risk of post-op infection (more on how surgical infections are tied to presurgery nutrition here) and a significantly reduced risk of post-operative nausea and vomiting (PONV).
According to Ms McAuliffe, a senior orthopaedic surgical practitioner at East Surrey Hospital, ERAS Programs “focus on every stage of the patient journey, from their initial assessment through to follow-up care. It’s a complete package and leads you to think about the patient as an individual so you can give them tailored care, which is what nursing should be all about.” Ultimately, the fact that ERAS offers a comprehensive approach to surgical care serves up benefits across the board—but particularly for empowered patients who see far better surgery recovery as a result of following ERAS protocols.
- There are resources to support patient prep.
One of the key elements of an ERAS program is using an ERAS-compliant presurgery drink in place of the outdated fasting-from-midnight instructions. (It makes perfect sense when you think about it: rather than entering surgery dehydrated and on an empty stomach, you have a presurgery nutrition plan designed specifically with the human body, anesthesia, surgical risks, and the healing process in mind.) But, sports drinks and chalky nutrition shakes don’t come close to making the cut—an ERAS-compliant drink has to meet a number of standards in order to be both safe to drink before surgery and effective enough to lead to proven enhanced recovery. Because ClearFast Preop was developed by an anesthesiologist specifically to meet ERAS requirements, getting patients ERAS-compliant presurgery nutrition is now a reality for hospitals across the U.S, who use ClearFast as part of their ERAS programs every day.
If you’re ready to wake up from anesthesia feeling great, you can ask your hospital if they have an ERAS program and order your ClearFast Preop Drink here. And, as always, don’t hesitate to reach out to the ClearFast team at firstname.lastname@example.org if you have any questions at all. We’re always here and happy to help!
Psst…Want to know even more about the benefits of ERAS? Check out clips from Dr. Olle Ljungqvist’s ERAS TED Talk here.