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EXPASS (Exercise and Physical Activity after Stoma Surgery) recommendations


We are dedicated to developing formal recommendations for exercise and physical activity following stoma surgery.


Presently, there are no formal published guidelines regarding exercise and physical activity after stoma surgery. This absence of consensus among healthcare professionals leads to confusion and lack of support for patients. Our aim is to address this gap.


Under the auspices of ASCN UK, an expert panel is diligently reviewing existing literature, exploring clinical practices, and crafting formal Delphi consensus recommendations. These recommendations will cater to healthcare professionals and individuals undergoing surgery alike.


By the end of 2024, ASCN UK will publish a comprehensive document encompassing peer-reviewed Delphi recommendations. These recommendations will cover various stages of stoma surgery recovery, providing clarity, consensus, and practical advice based on available evidence and clinical expertise.

Progress To Date

  1. Keynote speech at the ASCN UK National conference in 2022 initiated conversations on the need for recommendations.
  2. Collaboration with John Gregory, the project manager of the NSWOCC recommendations.
  3. Formation of an expert panel comprising physiotherapists, exercise specialists, patients with lived experience, surgeons, and nurses.
  4. Secured vital funding from industry partners.
  5. Ongoing meetings, literature reviews, and scoping.
  6. Registration of project scope and protocol according to the PRISMA-ScR checklist.
  7. Planned presentation of initial recommendations and complete publication at the WCET/ASCN Joint Congress in Glasgow in 2024.

Utilisation of Recommendations

Our document targets healthcare professionals, nurses, physiotherapists, surgeons, and allied professionals, as well as fitness instructors, Pilates teachers, and personal trainers. It will be readily accessible on the ASCN UK website with printed copies available. We aim to disseminate the information through online and in-person seminars, with expert group presentations at relevant conferences.

Expected Benefits

  • Consistency in advice provided to patients, leaving no room for ambiguity.
  • A straightforward step-by-step process for a wide range of professionals to support patients effectively.
  • Enhanced confidence among healthcare professionals in providing correct advice.
  • Patients will have access to trusted sources of information referenced by their healthcare providers.

Latest Project News

ASCN Project Updates

EXPASS ASCN UK Best Practice Recommendations Industry update

Date: 3 May 2024

EXPASS ASCN UK Best Practice Recommendations Industry update | March 25, 2024

First, we would like to thank you for your support with this project. We are delighted that it is now underway and on track for publication late this year. Several industry partners are involved, and we are grateful for your support. Thank you.

This is our first update, and we will keep you informed as we progress through the year. We aim to send an update quarterly. The project has the official title of the EXPASS (Exercise and Physical Activity after Stoma Surgery) recommendations. Please don’t hesitate to contact us if you have any questions.

Sarah Russell – on behalf of ASCN UK & EXPASS


  • The expert panel continues to work on the development of these best practice recommendations. The panel includes surgeons, people with lived experience, physiotherapists, exercise physiologists and specialist colorectal and stoma care nurses. All members are providing their services voluntarily.
  • Not unusually, a couple of members have dropped out due to time constraints but remain supportive and available for peer review.
  • The expert panel is meeting every four weeks via Zoom.
  • We have identified a few people to be peer reviewers.
  • A call for reviewers will be issued in the spring.


  • A verbal presentation has been agreed for ASCN/WCET conference in October 2024 in Glasgow.
  • The project’s scope was refined to include prehabilitation. It now includes prehabilitation, rehabilitation, and long-term exercise recommendations for those undergoing stoma formation.
  • The literature search phase conducted through Dr. Woo’s team at Queen’s University in Canada is almost complete. This has once again highlighted the lack of research in this area, hence the need for expert opinion and clinical experience to support these recommendations. The research has shown a significant lack of consensus among health care professionals and the subsequent confusion among patients about exercise. The recommendations will aim to address these issues.
  • Two independent members of the expert panel are well on their way to finishing a review of all the retrieved articles.
  • A small group will begin scrutinising what we’ve learned from the scoping review to identify major themes and preliminary draft recommendations.
  • Once a professionally edited list of recommendations is determined, these will be subjected to a Delphi consensus process.
  • Peer review is expected to commence after the summer.
  • Refer to Gantt chart timeline on next page.


  • The expert panel voted on a project name–EXercise and Physical Activity After

Stoma Surgery (EXPASS).

  • A PRISMA-ScR* checklist is being posted online. This is important to ensure we follow procedures, and that other groups and research teams are aware of the project to avoid duplication.
  • The British Journal of Nursing has accepted a manuscript describing the need for recommendations and project outline. This will be published in Spring 2024.
  • John Gregory will request an eps of your corporate logo after the summer.

*PRISMA-ScR = Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic reviews and Meta-Analyses extension for Scoping Reviews

Expert panel members

Members of the expert panel have given consent for us to share their names. In alphabetical order, they include Kerry Archer, Dr. Sanjay Chaudhri, Gráinne Donnelly, Amanda Gunning, Faye Jones, Yvonne Morris, Julie Munro, Dr. Raymond Oliphant, Wendy Osborne, Ryan Owens, Caroline Rudoni, Sarah Russell, Chris Ryder, Dr. Gabrielle Thorpe, and Emma Vernon.

Provisional milestones and timeline

Prepared by Sarah Russell, Wendy Osborne, and John Gregory, March 25, 2024

ASCN UK Projects – Expass

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