Interruptions in Enteral Nutrition Delivery in Critically Ill Patients and Recommendations for Clinical Practice

Author(s): Melissa L. Stewart, RN, DNP, MSN, CCNS, CCRN

Contact Hours 1.00

CERP A 1.00

Expires Aug 01, 2018

Topics: Gastrointestinal

Population: Adult

Role: Staff

Member: Free
NonMember: $10.00

Added to Collection

Activity Summary

Malnutrition is common in critically ill patients and is associated with poor outcomes for patients and increased health care spending. Enteral nutrition is the method of choice for nutrition delivery. Enteral nutrition delivery practices vary widely, and underfeeding is widespread in critical care. Interruptions in enteral nutrition due to performance of procedures, positioning, technical issues with feeding accesses, and gastrointestinal intolerance contribute to underfeeding. Strategies such as head-of-bed positioning, use of prokinetic agents, tolerance of higher gastric residual volumes, consideration of postpyloric feeding access, and use of a nutrition support protocol may decrease time spent without nutrition.


  • List consequences of malnutrition in critically ill patients
  • Discuss how current nursing routines may contribute to interruptions in enteral nutrition in the critically ill
  • Describe nursing interventions to improve the delivery of nutrition to critically ill patients

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Successful Completion

Learners must attend/view/read the entire activity and complete the associated evaluation to be awarded the contact hours or CERP. No partial credit will be awarded.


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