Welcome, this website is intended for all international healthcare professionals in uro-oncology. By clicking the link below you are declaring and confirming that you are a healthcare professional.

You are here

Enhanced Recovery Pathways Versus Standard Care After Cystectomy: A Meta-analysis of the Effect on Perioperative Outcomes

Eur Urol. 2016 Dec;70(6):995-1003.



Enhanced recovery after surgery (ERAS) protocols aim to improve surgical outcomes by reducing variation in perioperative best practices. However, among published studies, results show a striking variation in the effect of ERAS pathways on perioperative outcomes after cystectomy.


To perform a systematic review of the literature and a meta-analysis comparing the effectiveness of ERAS versus standard care on perioperative outcomes after cystectomy.

Evidence acquisition

We performed a literature search of PubMed, EMBASE, Web of Science, Google Scholar, the Cochrane Library, and the health-related grey literature in February 2016 according to the Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Review and Meta-analysis and the Cochrane Handbook. Studies were reviewed according to criteria from the Oxford Centre for Evidence-Based Medicine. Thirteen studies (1493 total patients) met the inclusion criteria (ERAS: 801, standard care: 692). A pooled meta-analysis of all comparative studies was performed using inverse-weighted, fixed-effects models, and random-effects models. Publication bias was graphically assessed using contour-enhanced funnel plots and was formally tested using the Harbord modification of the Egger test.

Evidence synthesis

Pooled data showed a lower overall complication rate (risk ratio [RR]: 0.85, 95% confidence interval [CI]: 0.74–0.97, p = 0.017, I2 = 35.6%), a shorter length of stay (standardized mean difference:−0.87, 95% CI: −1.31 to −0.42, p = 0.001, I2 = 92.8%), and a faster return of bowel function (standardized mean difference: −1.02, 95% CI: −1.69 to −0.34, p = 0.003, I2 = 92.2%) in the ERAS group. No difference was noted for the overall readmission rates (RR: 0.74, 95% CI: 0.39–1.41, p = 0.36, I2 = 51.4%), although a stratified analysis showed a lower 30-d readmission rate in the ERAS group (RR: 0.39, 95% CI: 0.19–0.83, p = 0.015, I2 = 0%).


ERAS protocols reduce the length of stay, time-to-bowel function, and rate of complications after cystectomy.

Patient summary

Enhanced recovery after surgery pathways for cystectomy reduce complications and the amount of time patients spend in the hospital.

Take Home Message

Cystectomy patients whose care is managed perioperatively with enhanced recovery after surgery pathways experience a shorter hospitalization, quicker recovery of bowel function, and lower complication rates. These findings lend further support for implementing standardized, multimodal, evidence-based, perioperative collaborative-care pathways for cystectomy patients.

Keywords: Clinical pathways, Collaborative care, Cystectomy, Enhanced recovery, Fast track.


a Department of Urology, Mayo Clinic Hospital, Phoenix, AZ, USA

b Department of Urologic Surgery, Vanderbilt University Medical Center, Nashville, TN, USA

Corresponding author. Department of Urology, Mayo Clinic Hospital, 5777 E Mayo Boulevard, Phoenix, AZ 85054, USA. Tel. +1-602-828-2096; Fax: +1-480-342-2799.