A feeding tube, or Percutaneous Enteral Gastronomy (PEG) tube, is a small tube that is placed between the outside of the patient's abdomen and the inside of the stomach. A PEG feeding tube allows for a patient to receive liquid nutrition, fluids and medicine directly into the stomach -- bypassing the mouth and esophagus.
A feeding tube may be needed when a patient is unable to use their esophagus due to disease or surgery, or when swollowing difficulties arise in the esophagus.
PEG tubes are initially placed by a physician while the patient is sedated and a local anesthetic is injected at the insertion point in the exterior abdominal wall. The doctor, frequently a gastroenterologist, will use an endoscope through the patient's mouth that goes down the esophagus and into the stomach to locate the best site for the PEG placement. The doctor will find the corresponding spot on the outside of the patient's abdomin during the placement procedure, often using a bright flashlight. A tube is inserted through the abdominal wall, a small valve will be placed on the tube inside the stomach and another small valve will go on the tube outside the patient's abdomin. Sometimes the doctor cannot find a safe spot to place a PEG due to the patient's anatomy.
Patients may need to stay in the hospital following the PEG placement, but patients frequently go home the same day. The patient's doctor will write a prescrition for liquid nutrition to be "fed" to the patient through the PEG.
PEG feeding tubes need maintenance like cleaning because they may become clogged. In the hospital patients may be surprise that soda pop is used to clean out the tube! If a PEG becomes dislodged, the patient should contact their doctor right away to limit resealing of the hole, spillingh of stomach contents and infection at the site.
For further information, you may consult the American Society for Gastrointestinal Endoscopy website at http://www.asge.org/PatientInfoIndex.aspx?id=394
Dr. Krieger has extensive experience in the placement of PEG feeding tubes, including replacement and repositioning PEGs as needed.
Feeding Tube (PEG)
This website is solely intended for informational purposes.
Always consult your doctor regarding medical conditions.
Copyright, Jeffrey L. Krieger, M.D. All rights reserved.
Therapeutic Feeding Tube Placement with a Board Certified Gastroenterologist located near Alliance, Far North Fort Worth, DFW, Haslet, Roanoke, Watauga, Heritage Trace, Keller, Westlake, Northlake, Justin, Saginaw, Trophy Club, Villages of Woodland Springs.