The role of postoperative supplementary enteral nutrition after gastrointestinal surgery is controversial. Therefore, a randomized clinical trial with attempts to address the question of plenitude of routine application of postoperative enteral feeding on rate of postoperative complications following pancreatoduodenectomy was performed. Sixty patients undergoing pancreatoduodenectomy were blindly randomized into two groups: 30 patients in the first group received early enteral nutrition (EEN), while 30 patients in the second group were given early natural nutrition (ENN). The complications were evaluated according to definition criteria. All complications were further subdivided into infectious and noninfectious complications. Our data showed that patients in EEN group gained a larger amount of energy in kcal a day during the first five days after surgery in comparison to ENN group. There was a higher rate of postoperative complications in ENN group (53.3% vs 23.3%, P=0.03). This difference occurred mainly due to the higher incidence of infectious complications in ENN group (46.7% vs 16.7%, P=0.025). There were six cases of bacteriemia in this group of patients, while only one case was observed in EEN group (6 (20.0%) vs 1 (3.3%), P=0.1). The overall risk for the development of any type of infectious complication was 1.5 times higher in ENN group. In conclusion, this study suggests that supplementary postoperative enteral nutrition helps to decrease the rate of infectious complications in patients undergoing pancreatoduodenectomy, especially in those with a plasma albumin level of less than 34.5 g/L and/or ASA class III or higher, since natural nutrition is insufficient in this ca.
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