Nursing Home Feeding Tube Misadventures

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Older adults in nursing homes may require feeding tubes for a variety of reasons including swallowing difficulties and as a precautionary measure to attempt to prevent aspiration pneumonia in certain types of patients.  These feedings tubes can be temporary or permanent and require close monitoring in order to avoid potentially life threatening complications.  Gastrostomy feeding tubes (G-tubes) involve the placement of a feeding tube through the stomach wall directly into the stomach; Jejunostomy feeding tubes (J-tubes) involve the placement of a feeding tube through the abdomen into the small intestine; Nasogastric feeding tubes (NG-tubes) involve the placement of a feeding tube through the nose and esophagus and into the stomach.

Some complications to watch for include clogged tubes (especially if the feeding tube is not properly maintained and cleaned), dislodged tubes and infection around the tube insertion area.  It is very important that the nursing home staff carefully monitor tube feedings and notify physicians of significant changes in the patient's condition.  Additionally, in the event that a Jejunostomy tube (J-tube) becomes dislodged, nurses should notify the physician immediately and should not attempt to reinsert the feeding tube on their own.  Rather, this should generally be performed by a physician in a hospital setting.

Please feel free to contact the nursing home neglect lawyers at Dever & Feldstein, LLC at (888) 825-9119 for a free consultation if you believe that a family member or loved one has sustained serious injury or wrongful death as a result of feeding tube complications, bed sores (also known as pressure sores or decubitus ulcers), nursing home falls, dehydration/malnutrition, medication error/prescription mistake, elder abuse or elder neglect.

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This page contains a single entry by David Feldstein published on June 25, 2012 8:28 AM.

Dehydration in the Nursing Home Population was the previous entry in this blog.

Maryland Nursing Home Policies and Procedures Regarding Decubitus Ulcer (Bedsore) Prevention As Evidence of the Standard of Care is the next entry in this blog.

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