Enhanced recovery after surgery for major orthopedic surgery: a narrative review

Yun Seong Choi, Tae Woo Kim, Moon Jong Chang, Seung Baik Kang, Chong Bum Chang

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review


Background: With increasing interest in enhanced recovery after surgery (ERAS), the literature on ERAS in orthopedic surgery is also rapidly accumulating. This review article aims to (1) summarize the components of the ERAS protocol applied to orthopedic surgery, (2) evaluate the outcomes of ERAS in orthopedic surgery, and (3) suggest practical strategies to implement the ERAS protocol successfully. Main body: Overall, 17 components constituting the highly recommended ERAS protocol in orthopedic surgery were identified. In the preadmission period, preadmission counseling and the optimization of medical conditions were identified. In the preoperative period, avoidance of prolonged fasting, multimodal analgesia, and prevention of postoperative nausea and vomiting were identified. During the intraoperative period, anesthetic protocols, prevention of hypothermia, and fluid management, urinary catheterization, antimicrobial prophylaxis, blood conservation, local infiltration analgesia and local nerve block, and surgical factors were identified. In the postoperative period, early oral nutrition, thromboembolism prophylaxis, early mobilization, and discharge planning were identified. ERAS in orthopedic surgery reduced postoperative complications, hospital stay, and cost, and improved the patient outcomes and satisfaction with accelerated recovery. For successful implementation of the ERAS protocol, various strategies including the standardization of care system, multidisciplinary communication and collaboration, ERAS education, and continuous audit system are necessary. Conclusion: The ERAS pathway enhanced patient recovery with a shortened length of stay, reduced postoperative complications, and improved patient outcomes and satisfaction. However, despite the significant progress in ERAS implementation in recent years, it has mainly focused on major surgeries such as arthroplasty. Therefore, further efforts to apply, audit, and optimize ERAS in various orthopedic surgeries are necessary.

Original languageEnglish
Article number8
JournalKnee Surgery and Related Research
Issue number1
StatePublished - Dec 2022


  • Components
  • Enhanced recovery after surgery
  • Implementation
  • Orthopedic surgery
  • Outcomes


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