The preparation and postoperative management of the patient undergoing surgery of the lower bowel has assumed a position of increasing importance to both the surgeon and the gastroenterologist during the past decade. The results of the clinical application of certain factors responsible for this metamorphosis have been well demonstrated in our series of patients with lesions of the colon and rectum, including over 600 with malignant growths in this region, and are summarized in table 1.
It is our opinion that this reduction in mortality following surgical procedures of this magnitude has been due largely to the advances that have been made in the preparation and after-care of these patients rather than to refinements in surgical technic. In this presentation it is possible to discuss only a few of the most important advances, which in our opinion have been chiefly responsible for these results.
PREOPERATIVE EVALUATION AND PREPARATION