• Br J Anaesth · Feb 2022


    Prehabilitation in adult patients undergoing surgery: an umbrella review of systematic reviews.

    Prehabilitation may improve postoperative outcomes, but the evidence base is still sparse and uncertain.

    • Daniel I McIsaac, Marlyn Gill, Laura Boland, Brian Hutton, Karina Branje, Julia Shaw, Alexa L Grudzinski, Natasha Barone, Chelsia Gillis, and Prehabilitation Knowledge Network.
    • Department of Anesthesiology and Pain Medicine, University of Ottawa, Ottawa, ON, Canada; Clinical Epidemiology Program, Ottawa Hospital Research Institute, Ottawa, ON, Canada; School of Epidemiology and Public Health, University of Ottawa, Ottawa, ON, Canada. Electronic address: dmcisaac@toh.ca.
    • Br J Anaesth. 2022 Feb 1; 128 (2): 244-257.

    BackgroundThe certainty that prehabilitation improves postoperative outcomes is not clear. The objective of this umbrella review (i.e. systematic review of systematic reviews) was to synthesise and evaluate evidence for prehabilitation in improving health, experience, or cost outcomes.MethodsWe performed an umbrella review of prehabilitation systematic reviews. MEDLINE, Embase, Cochrane, Cumulative Index to Nursing and Allied Health Literature, PsycINFO, Joanna Briggs Institute's database, and Web of Science were searched (inception to October 20, 2020). We included all systematic reviews of elective, adult patients undergoing surgery and exposed to a prehabilitation intervention, where health, experience, or cost outcomes were reported. Evidence certainty was assessed using Grading of Recommendations Assessment, Development and Evaluation. Primary syntheses of any prehabilitation were stratified by surgery type.ResultsFrom 1412 titles, 55 systematic reviews were included. For patients with cancer undergoing surgery who participate in any prehabilitation, moderate certainty evidence supports improvements in functional recovery. Low to very low certainty evidence supports reductions in complications (mixed, cardiovascular, and cancer surgery), non-home discharge (orthopaedic surgery), and length of stay (mixed, cardiovascular, and cancer surgery). There was low to very low certainty evidence that exercise prehabilitation reduces the risk of complications, non-home discharge, and length of stay. There was low to very low certainty evidence that nutritional prehabilitation reduces risk of complications, mortality, and length of stay.ConclusionsLow certainty evidence suggests that prehabilitation may improve postoperative outcomes. Future low risk of bias, randomised trials, synthesised using recommended standards, are required to inform practice. Optimal patient selection, intervention design, and intervention duration must also be determined.Copyright © 2021 British Journal of Anaesthesia. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

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    Prehabilitation may improve postoperative outcomes, but the evidence base is still sparse and uncertain.

    Daniel Jolley  Daniel Jolley
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