Fasting For Surgery
What is Anaesthetic Fasting?
Why is Fasting Important?
Fasting is important before surgery primarily to reduce the risk of pulmonary aspiration, which is the accidental inhalation of stomach contents into the lungs. Factors including gastric volume and certain medications can increase the incidence of pulmonary aspiration.
Fasting for a certain duration before surgery, typically clear fluids up to two hours prior and solid food up to six hours prior, is recommended to lessen this risk.
Moreover, fasting aims to minimize adverse metabolic effects such as insulin resistance, dehydration, and increased gastric acidity, which when combined with surgical trauma, can lead to poor postoperative outcomes.
Ensuring adherence to these guidelines is crucial to patient safety and surgical success.