Enhanced Recovery Program Improves Outcomes After Colorectal Cancer Surgery

Traci L. Hedrick, MD, MS
Published: Thursday, Feb 02, 2017
VCUTraci L. Hedrick, MD, MS
Traci L. Hedrick, MD, MS
Assistant Professor, Surgery
Co-Director, Enhanced Recovery Program
University of Virginia Health System Strategic Partnership
The adoption of enhanced recovery after surgery (ERAS) protocols can improve not only the outcomes of patients after a procedure but can also reduce hospital costs, as has been seen in an ERAS program in colorectal cancer at the University of Virginia (UVA) Health System.

ERAS aims to reduce opioid intake through the use of multimodal analgesia, such as anti-inflammatory agents, local anesthetics, and other nonopioid pain management strategies.

Impact of Enhanced Recovery at the University of Virginia

We implemented a multidisciplinary ERAS protocol in patients undergoing major colorectal surgery in 2013 at the UVA Health Center.18 We observed dramatic improvements in colorectal surgery quality outcomes including a 2-day reduction in length of stay, an 80% reduction in opioids, and a 50% reduction in overall complications (Figure 1). There was a 67 per patient reduction in total hospital costs and significant improvements in patient satisfaction.

Figure 1. Differences in length of stay and complications before and after implementation of
enhanced recovery
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Online CME Activities
TitleExpiration DateCME Credits
Community Practice Connections™: 22nd Annual International Congress on Hematologic Malignancies®: Focus on Leukemias, Lymphomas and MyelomaMay 30, 20192.0
Online Medical Crossfire®: 5th Annual Miami Lung Cancer ConferenceMay 30, 20196.5
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