Enteral feeding is a way to feed your child using a feeding tube. You will learn how to care for the tube and the skin, flush the tube, and set up the bolus or pump feedings. This article will help you manage minor problems that may occur with feedings.
Enteral feeding is a way to feed your child using a feeding tube. Enteral feedings will become easier for you to do with practice. Your health care provider will go over all of the steps you should follow to deliver the feedings.
You will learn how to care for the tube and the skin, flush the tube, and set up the bolus or pump feedings.
Sometimes a feeding does not go as planned, and you may have a minor problem. Your provider will go over all of the things that can happen and what you should do.
Follow your instructions on how to solve problems if they come up. Below are some general guidelines.
If the tube is clogged or plugged:
If the child coughs or gags when you insert the nasogastric tube:
If your child has diarrhea and cramping:
If your child has an upset stomach or is vomiting:
If your child is constipated:
If your child is dried out (dehydrated), ask your provider about changing formula or adding additional water.
If your child is losing weight, ask your provider about changing formula or adding more feedings.
If your child has a nasogastric tube and the skin is irritated:
If your child's Corpak feeding tube falls out, call your child's provider. Do not replace it yourself.
Call the provider if you notice your child has:
If your child has trouble breathing, call 911 or the local emergency number.
Collins S, Mills D, Steinhorn DM. Nutritional support in children. In: Vincent J-L, Abraham E, Moore FA, Kochanek PM, Fink MP, eds. Textbook of Critical Care. 7th ed. Philadelphia, PA: Elsevier; 2017:chap 44.
La Charite J. Nutrition and growth. In: Kleinman K, Mcdaniel L, Molloy M, eds. Harriet Lane Handbook, The. 22nd ed. Philadelphia, PA: Elsevier; 2021:chap 21.
LeLeiko NS, Shapiro JM, Cerezo CS, Pinkos BA. Enteral nutrition. In: Wyllie R, Hyams JS, Kay M, eds. Pediatric Gastrointestinal and Liver Disease. 6th ed. Philadelphia, PA: Elsevier; 2021:chap 89.BACK TO TOP
Review Date: 10/2/2020
Reviewed By: Neil K. Kaneshiro, MD, MHA, Clinical Professor of Pediatrics, University of Washington School of Medicine, Seattle, WA. Also reviewed by David Zieve, MD, MHA, Medical Director, Brenda Conaway, Editorial Director, and the A.D.A.M. Editorial team.
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