Improving enhanced recovery after surgery (ERAS): ERAS APPtimize study protocol, a randomized controlled trial investigating the effect of a patient-centred mobile application on patient participation in colorectal surgery

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Background: Perioperative care in colorectal surgery is systematically defined in the Enhanced Recovery After Surgery (ERAS) protocol. The ERAS protocol improves perioperative care in a multimodal way to enhance early and safe release from the hospital. Adequate compliance to the elements of the ERAS protocol is multifactorial. There are still opportunities to improve compliance of the protocol by actively involving the patient. The main objective of this study is to investigate whether compliance of selected items in the ERAS protocol can be improved through actively involving patients in the ERAS care pathway through the use of a patient-centred mobile application. Methods: A multicentre randomized controlled trial will be conducted. Patients undergoing elective colorectal surgery, who are 18 years or older and in possession of an eligible smartphone, will be included. Patients assigned to the intervention group will install a patient-centred mobile application to be guided through the ERAS care pathway. Patients in the control group will receive care as usual. Both groups will wear an activity tracker. The primary outcome is overall compliance to selected active elements of the ERAS protocol, as registered by the patient. Secondary outcomes include Patient Reported Outcome Measures (PROMs) such as health-related quality of life, physical activity, and patient satisfaction of received care. Care-related outcomes, such as length of hospital stay, number of complications, re-intervention, and readmission rates, will also be assessed. Results: The enrolment of patients will start in the second quarter of 2019. Data collection had not begun by the time this protocol was submitted. Conclusion: We hypothesize that by providing patients with a patient-centred mobile application, compliance to the active elements of ERAS protocol can be improved, resulting in an increased health-related quality of life, physical activity, and patient satisfaction. Trial registration: Netherlands Trial Register, NTR7314, prospectively registered on the 9th of November 2017 (
Original languageEnglish
Article number125
JournalBMC Surgery
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2 Sept 2019

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