This is the protocol for a review and there is no abstract. The objectives are as follows:
The objective of this review is to examine whether chewing gum after surgery hastens the return of gastrointestinal function. The review will consider the impact of chewing gum on indicators of bowel function (time to first passage of flatus, bowel movement and bowel sounds) and on recovery (length of hospital stay and postoperative complications). The review will also consider tolerability of chewing gum and the costs and benefits associated with using this intervention.