Studies have found that chewing gum is good for the recovery process after heart surgery

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Studies have found that chewing gum is good for the recovery process after heart surgery

This study found that chewing gum helps to accelerate the recovery of intestinal function after surgery. In addition, the chewing gum rehabilitation method is easy to implement and can be used for almost all patients after surgery. Researchers at work studied patients undergoing elective thoracotomy, heart valve replacement, or mitral valve repair and replacement. The research group consisted of 341 patients who underwent surgery between 2017 and 2020. They chewed sugar-free gum after the surgery.

The study also has a second group, including 496 patients who underwent similar surgery between 2013 and 2016. They did not chew gum after the surgery. Among the 341 patients who had chewed gum, only two patients were confirmed to have postoperative ileum. Of the 496 patients who did not chew gum, 17 had postoperative ileum. The postoperative ileum is due to the lack of regular muscle contractions in the intestine, which causes food to block the intestine.

Digestive tract problems are some of the most common complications of patients after heart surgery. Researchers know that as many as 5.5% of postoperative heart disease patients will be troubled by this condition. This situation can slow down recovery and lead to longer hospital stays.

The researchers of this project believe that chewing gum can use “sham eating” to stimulate the intestines because they think food is coming. The team found that the cost of chewing gum after surgery is not high, and it can effectively improve intestinal function and help shorten the length of hospital stay.