Understanding factors affecting post-operative recovery is of great importance to efforts at reducing morbidity and mortality after general surgery. Post-operatively, most patients suffer from objectively and subjectively measurable reduced sleep quality. We aimed to review the available literature on post-operative sleep in patients undergoing colorectal surgery.
This systematic review was conducted according to the PRISMA guidelines, searching the electronic data-bases PubMed, Embase and the Cochrane Library. All articles were evaluated according to pre-defined inclusion criteria.
Five studies were included in the review. Sleep quality was affected by type of surgery (open or laparoscopic), the administration/mode of application of analgesics (epidural analgesia or continuous wound infusion) and the level of pain. Patients who listened to new age music and a "relaxing text" had better quality of post-operative sleep than controls. Overall, pain interfered with subjective, post-operative sleep quality and adequate treatment of pain improved subjective sleep quality.
Sleep quality is sensitive to various factors in the perioperative period, and impairment of sleep quality can be prevented by simple improvements in perioperative care.