Initial and Ongoing Verification of Feeding Tube Placement in Adults

(applies to blind insertions and placements with an electromagnetic device)


Practice Alert

Available only to registered users.

Additional Tools

Available only to users with a paid AACN membership.

Added to Collection

Scope and Impact of the Problem

Although often considered an innocuous procedure, bedside placement of a feeding tube can cause serious and even fatal complications.1–3 Although styleted small-bore tubes are most often associated with complications, large-bore tubes without stylets are not without risk.1,4–6 In a study7 of 9931 blindly inserted narrow-bore nasoenteric tubes, 1.9% were placed in the tracheobronchial tree; of the 187 tube misplacements, 35 cases of pneumothoraces (at least 5 of which resulted in a patient’s death) occurred. In rare situations, feeding tubes may also be inadvertently positioned in the brain, especially in patients with a traumatic defect.4,8–10 Risk for aspiration is greatly increased when a feeding tube’s ports end in the esophagus.1,11

Sign in to to view the complete text. Not an registered user? Sign up today. It takes five minutes and is completely free.