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Original Research

Open Access

Early postoperative gastric enteral nutrition improves gastric emptying after noncomplicated cardiac surgery


1Department of Anesthesiology and ICU University Hospital Rijeka,Department of Cardiac Surgery University Hospital Rijeka

DOI: 10.22514/SV11.102006.3 Vol.1,Issue 1,October 2006 pp.16-19

Published: 08 October 2006

*Corresponding Author(s): ALAN ŠUSTIĆ E-mail:


Background: Postoperative intragastric enteral feeding in cardiac surgery patients is frequently complicated by delayed gastric emptying. Objective: To evaluate how early postoperative gastric enteral nutrition affects gastric emptying in coronary artery by-pass graft (CABG) surgery patients. Methods: In this prospective, randomized study a group of 40 patients treated in the intensive care unit after CABG surgery were studied. Patients were divided in two groups: group E (20 patients: age 59±8 yr.; male 70%) and control group C (20 patients: age 58±10 yr.; male 80%), respectively. The paracetamol absorption test was used to evaluate gastric emptying. In group E gastric enteral nutrition begun 18 hours after surgery and 6 hours later this was stopped and paracetamol solution was administered. The patients in group C received only crystalloid solutions for first 24 hours. Blood samples were obtained at 0 (t0), 15 (t+15), 30 (t+30), 60 (t+60) and 120 (t+120) min after administration of paracetamol. Results: The values of plasma paracetamol concentration (PPC) at 15 and 120 min were significantly higher in group E when compared with .group C: (t+15) 3.3±2.5 vs. 1.7±1.9 and (t+120) 5.2±2.8 vs. 3.3±1.6 (p <0.05). The PPC values at 30 and 60 min were higher, but not significantly, in group E vs. group C: (t+30) 3.7±2.0 vs. 2.9±2.7 and (t+60) 5.1±3.2 vs. 3.9±3.5 (p = NS). The area under the PPC curve was 429 ± 309 in the E group vs. 293 ± 204 in the group C (p < 0.05). Conclusion: Early postoperative gastric administration of nutritients after CABG surgery stimulates gastric emptying.  


Early postoperative enteral nutrition; gastric emptying

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ALAN ŠUSTIĆ,MARKO ZELIĆ,IGOR MEDVED,JADRANKO SOKOLIĆ. Early postoperative gastric enteral nutrition improves gastric emptying after noncomplicated cardiac surgery. Signa Vitae. 2006. 1(1);16-19.


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