Date of Award

Fall 11-16-2018

Degree Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP)


School of Nursing

First Advisor

Crystal Odle

Second Advisor

Jennifer Stewart-Glenn

Third Advisor

Jane Castle


Abstract: The Enhanced Recovery After Surgery protocol (ERAS) is a multimodal collaborative approach implemented throughout the perioperative phase to enhance patient outcomes. The key mechanism for effectiveness in the ERAS protocol is the attenuation of the surgical stress response combined with treatments that support the return of functions that delay recovery in traditional methods. The purpose of this scholarly project was to evaluate the results of the ERAS Pilot program currently initiated at Baptist Memorial Hospital to improve patient outcomes undergoing major abdominal surgery. Prior to the implementation of the ERAS protocol there was no standardized method in place at this institution to improve patient recovery. There was monthly educational in-services pertaining to ERAS guidelines provided to healthcare providers taking care of ERAS patients in order to increase the levels of compliance with protocol orders. A retrospective chart review was conducted evaluating average length of stay, return of bowel function, opioid consumption, pain scores, patient satisfaction, and postoperative surgical complications in ERAS versus non-ERAS patients undergoing major abdominal surgery to measure the effectiveness of the ERAS protocol at Baptist Memorial Hospital.