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Fast track vaginal surgery


Address for correspondence:
Marianne Ottesen, MD
Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology
Hvidovre University Hospital
2650 Hvidovre


Objective. Our aim was to describe the need for postoperative hospitalization after vaginal surgery for utero-vaginal prolapse with well-defined charts for postoperative care.

Design. A prospective, descriptive study. Consecutive women admitted for first-time vaginal surgery for utero-vaginal prolapse at a public university hospital in Copenhagen, Denmark, underwent surgery and postoperative care in a fast track setting from September 15, 1999 to June 15 2000.

Methods. A multimodal rehabilitation model with emphasis on information, standardized general anesthesia, reduced surgical distress, optimized pain-relief, early oral nutrition and ambulation, minimal use of indwelling catheter and vaginal packing.

Outcome measures.  Postoperative hospital stay, complications, re-admission, success rate, patients' satisfaction and acceptability.

Results. Forty-one women with a median age of 69 years (range, 44–88 years) were included. All underwent anterior and/or posterior vaginal repair. Nineteen (46.3%) underwent vaginal hysterectomy, and eight (19.5%) underwent the Manchester procedure. Postoperative hospital stay was median 24 hr. Only three (7.3%) were discharged later than 48 hr. No re-admissions occurred. The most frequent complications were urinary retention exceeding 450 ml, and urinary tract infection (12.2%, and 9.8%, respectively). Short-term success rate was 97.6%. Patients' satisfaction rates were 85.4–95.1%. The median score of acceptability was 10 on a 0–10 points scale.

Conclusion. The need for postoperative hospitalization was median 24 hr after vaginal surgery in a fast track setting, independently of the complexity of the procedure performed. Short-term success rate, satisfaction rates, and acceptability were all excellent. Follow up has been established to evaluate long-term success rates and recurrence.

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