Purpose: Enhanced recovery after surgery (ERAS) pathways have significantly reduced complications and length of hospital stay after colorectal procedures. This multimodal concept could probably be partially applied to major urological surgery.
Objectives: The primary objective was to systematically assess the evidence of ERAS single items and protocols applied to cystectomy patients. The secondary objective was to address a grade of recommendation to each item, based on the evidence and, if lacking, on consensus opinion from our ERAS Society working group.
Evidence acquisition: A systematic literature review was performed on ERAS for cystectomy by searching EMBASE and Medline. Relevant articles were selected and quality-assessed by two independent reviewers using the GRADE approach. If no study specific to cystectomy was available for any of the 22 given items, the authors evaluated whether colorectal guidelines could be extrapolated.
Evidence synthesis: Overall, 804 articles were retrieved from electronic databases. Fifteen articles were included in the present systematic review and 7 of 22 ERAS items were studied. Bowel preparation did not improve outcomes. Early nasogastric tube removal reduced morbidity, bowel recovery time and length of hospital stay. Doppler-guided fluid administration allowed for reduced morbidity. A quicker bowel recovery was observed with a multimodal prevention of ileus, including gum chewing, prevention of PONV and minimally invasive surgery.
Conclusions: ERAS has not yet been widely implemented in urology and evidence for individual interventions is limited or unavailable. The experience in other surgical disciplines encourages the development of an ERAS protocol for cystectomy.
Keywords: Bladder cancer; Cystectomy; ERAS; Fast-track; LOS; RCT; enhanced recovery after surgery; length of hospital stay; randomized controlled trial.
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