Nutrition Support in Critically Ill Surgical Patients

  • Lee-anne Chapple
  • Marianne ChapmanEmail author


Following elective surgery or acute injury, there is a stress-induced elevation in energy expenditure and protein catabolism. Historically, nutrition support has often been avoided or delayed due to concerns that initiation will increase the risk of aspiration, anastomotic breakdown, or ischaemic bowel or due to a lack of recognition of the potential benefits. The importance of nutrition support delivered preoperatively, to improve return of bowel function and reduce the need for excessive insulin therapy, and post-operatively, to reduce length of stay, infectious complications, and muscle wasting and improve wound healing, is now recognised. This chapter will provide best practice guidance on the identification of nutritional risk, prescription, and delivery of optimal nutrition support and feeding strategies for specific patient populations including burns, head injury, pancreatitis, and open abdomen to improve recovery.


Enteral nutrition Parenteral nutrition Energy expenditure Protein requirements Nutrition assessment Preoperative nutrition Post-operative nutrition 


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© Springer International Publishing AG, part of Springer Nature 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Discipline of Acute Care Medicine, School of MedicineUniversity of AdelaideAdelaideAustralia
  2. 2.National Health and Medical Research Council of Australia Centre for Clinical Research Excellence in Nutritional Physiology and OutcomesAdelaideAustralia
  3. 3.Intensive Care Research UnitRoyal Adelaide HospitalAdelaideAustralia

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