Background: The aims of this study were: 1) to investigate the correlation between carbohydrate-rich drinks (CRDs) before gastric cancer surgery and postoperative nutrition laboratory findings; and 2) to determine whether CRDs affect the incidence of postoperative complications.Materials and methods: A retrospective study was conducted on 142 patients who underwent radical stomach cancer surgery. The patients were divided into two groups (NPO group vs. CRD group) according to the intake of CRDs prior to surgery. We performed statistical analysis using Student’s t-test, the Chi-square test and a binary logistic regression model (SPSS Statistics software, version 24).Results: Laboratory analysis of the nutrition status showed a significant increase in serum protein and albumin levels in the CRD group after postoperative day 1 (POD#1) (p<0.05).The overall morbidity rate showed no difference between the two groups, but pulmonary complications showed significant differences of 1/72 and 9/70 (p=0.008). In the univariate analysis, there were significantly increased pulmonary complications in patients with higher Eastern Cooperative Oncology Group (ECOG) scores (p = 0.001), existing pulmonary disease (p = 0.003), anastomotic leakage (p = 0.03), and CRD intake (p=0.008). In the multivariate analysis, CRD intake was the only independent factor.ConclusionWe found that administering a CRD is effective in improving albumin and protein levels in the short-term period after surgery but is an independent factor for pulmonary complications after gastrectomy. We recommend that patients with no medications for pulmonary disease and with low ECOG scores can safely ingest CRDs and expect short-term nutritional effects.

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