American Society for Enhanced Recovery and Perioperative Quality Initiative Joint Consensus Statement on Nutrition Screening and Therapy Within a Surgical Enhanced Recovery Pathway

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Abstract

Perioperative malnutrition has proven to be challenging to define, diagnose, and treat. Despite these challenges, it is well known that suboptimal nutritional status is a strong independent predictor of poor postoperative outcomes. Although perioperative caregivers consistently express recognition of the importance of nutrition screening and optimization in the perioperative period, implementation of evidence-based perioperative nutrition guidelines and pathways in the United States has been quite limited and needs to be addressed in surgery-focused recommendations. The second Perioperative Quality Initiative brought together a group of international experts with the objective of providing consensus recommendations on this important topic with the goal of (1) developing guidelines for screening of nutritional status to identify patients at risk for adverse outcomes due to malnutrition; (2) address optimal methods of providing nutritional support and optimizing nutrition status preoperatively; and (3) identifying when and how to optimize nutrition delivery in the postoperative period. Discussion led to strong recommendations for implementation of routine preoperative nutrition screening to identify patients in need of preoperative nutrition optimization. Postoperatively, nutrition delivery should be restarted immediately after surgery. The key role of oral nutrition supplements, enteral nutrition, and parenteral nutrition (implemented in that order) in most perioperative patients was advocated for with protein delivery being more important than total calorie delivery. Finally, the role of often-inadequate nutrition intake in the posthospital setting was discussed, and the role of postdischarge oral nutrition supplements was emphasized.

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