• A transition to ambulatory preoperative antibiotic bowel preparation was carried out. The protocol included a liquid diet for 40 hours preceding surgery and coordination of purging with buffered oral saline laxative, 45 mL containing 8 g sodium phosphate and 22 g sodium biphosphate (Fleet Phospho-Soda, C. B. Fleet Co, Lynchburg, Va) and bisacodyl preparation with an oral erythromycin base—neomycin routine. Enemas were omitted. Personnel in the preoperative evaluation center had the responsibility of instructing patients, distributing directions and drugs, and reviewing for compliance and possible problems during the preoperative period. All patients scheduled for any of a variety of gastrointestinal procedures, as well as some other complex operations, were included in this study. Follow-up data were obtained. Surgeons' comments regarding efficacy were highly favorable. In only five cases was there comment regarding liquid stool, and this was no impediment to surgery. This incidence was comparable with that of the inpatient experience, as was the spectrum of postoperative complications. Transfer of responsibility to the department proceeded with ease. Results were entirely comparable with those of the former inpatient experience.
(Arch Surg. 1993;128:441-444)