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Postoperative ileus (POI) affects one in four patients undergoing major elective abdominal surgery. It is associated with prolonged hospital stay and other postoperative complications, and carries a significant financial burden on healthcare facilities.1 Some studies suggest the inhibition of the inflammatory response after surgery may reduce the development of POI. Chewing gum is hypothesised to exert an effect via reduction of postoperative inflammation through cephalic vagal activation. Although a number of systematic reviews and meta-analyses have been published, the role of chewing gum in POI still remains unclear.2 Additionally, with the …
Competing interests None declared.
Provenance and peer review Commissioned; internally peer reviewed.