Feeding Tube Insertion - Gastrostomy

A gastrostomy feeding tube insertion is the placement of a feeding tube through the skin and the stomach wall, directly into the stomach.

Description

Gastrostomy feeding tube insertion is done in part using a procedure called endoscopy. After the endoscopy tube is inserted, the skin over the left side of belly (abdomen) area is cleaned and numbed. The doctor makes a small surgical cut in this area and inserts a small, flexible, hollow tube with a balloon or special tip into the stomach. The doctor uses stitches to close the stomach around the tube.

Why the Procedure is Done

Gastrostomy feeding tubes are put in for different reasons. They may be needed for a short while or permanently. This procedure may be recommended for:

  • Babies with birth defects of the mouth, esophagus, or stomach (for example, esophageal atresia or tracheal esophageal fistula)
  • Patients who cannot swallow correctly
  • Patients who cannot take enough food by mouth to stay healthy
  • Patients who often breathe in food when eating

Prep Instructions for Upper Endoscopy, Dilation, PEG or ERCP

Arrive at the Endoscopy Center at the Winchester Medical Center, Medical Office Building #2, Suite 100, mall level for your procedure that is scheduled.

The endoscopy center is located on the first floor of MOB II suite 100.Tel 540 536-8746. Signs will direct you to endoscopy on the Mall level (to the right as you enter the revolving doors). Do not go to the office on the third floor. You are to arrive one hour in advance of the scheduled procedure time to allow for administrative check in and final procedure preparation. Procedure times are approximate and even though we intend to start on time there can be delays and we ask for your patience. On average you will be in the unit approximately 2-3 hours. Most procedures take 15 minutes and recovery from the sedation takes 45-60 minutes. You will be seen by your physician prior to discharge from the unit. Written discharge instructions will be given to you. You should take it easy after discharge until all the drug effects have worn off. Any diet instructions will be discussed with you by your physician prior to discharge. Any other special needs (like work slips), should be discussed prior to discharge with your physician. You will have a private holding room during your procedure which will accommodate comfortably one other individual, preferably your designated driver. You will not be allowed to drive yourself home because of the sedation used.

Diet

Your diet should be restricted for this procedure to allow for optimal visualization of your gastrointestinal tract. You may drink clear liquids in limited quantities up to 2 hours before the procedure. No solids should be eaten for at least 6 hours before the scheduled time of the procedure.

Medications

You may take your usual medications with a small amount of water no later than 2 hours before the scheduled procedure time. Diabetes medications are usually held or reduced to half strength before these procedures because your food intake is being restricted. This should be discussed at the time the procedure is scheduled. Your medications can usually be restarted immediately after the procedure.

Anticoagulants

Aspirin, Plavix and Coumadin should not be stopped for routine upper endoscopy. They are usually stopped for esophageal dilations and variceal banding. Patients having these procedures should discuss how to handle the blood thinners at the time the procedure is scheduled. Patients who cannot stop blood thinners because of the high risk of stroke should discuss any changes of blood thinners with your doctor.

Antibiotics are no longer required for routine endoscopic procedures. PEG and ERCP are the exceptions.

***Insurance: If a pre-certification is required, you must call your insurance company immediately. Authorization may take a period of time. If additional information is requested from the insurance company, advise them to contact our office. If you do not have insurance, please call our office at 540-667-1244 to make payment arrangements.***