A feeding tube is a medical device that is surgically implanted in the abdomen to assist with nutrition. A feeding tube may be placed for a variety of reasons, including but not limited to: dysphagia (difficulty swallowing), cancer, or failure to thrive. The main purpose of a feeding tube is to provide nutrition and to decrease the risk of aspiration.
Our skilled nursing staff will assist and educate you and your loved ones in:
- Administering nutrition and fluids for hydration
- Administering medications
- Cleaning stoma (site around tube)
- Checking placement of tube
Types of Feeding Tubes
- Percutaneous Endoscopic Gastrostomy (PEG) Tube is a tube that goes through the skin and directly into the stomach, used to administer tube feeding, water and medications.
- Percutaneous Endoscopic Jejunostomy (PEJ) Tube is inserted in a similar manner as the PEG, but the tube is moved past the stomach into the top of the small intestine.
- Nasogastric tube (NG) is a common type of feeding tube for short term use. It enters through the nose and its tip ends up in the stomach.
Living With a Feeding Tube
Depending on why you need a feeding tube, you may have it for several weeks or months or for the rest of your life. Having a feeding tube means learning new skills and adopting new routines. You'll need to learn how to use and care for the tube, and how to avoid common problems.
- A feeding tube is inserted during a surgery. After the surgery, you'll have a 6- to 12-inch tube coming out of your belly.
- Foods, liquids, and medicines are given using the tube. The food is a mixture (formula) made up of proteins, carbohydrates, fats, vitamins, and minerals.
- Keeping the tube clean is very important.
- Adjusting to using a feeding tube takes time. The first step is learning all you can about how the tube works and how to avoid problems. Making tube feeding less of a mystery may help you make it a part of your daily life.
How We Assist with Feeding Tubes