Introduction A Nasogastric tube (NGT) is a commonly used device for administration of enteral feeding. It may be used as a bridge to a more definitive procedure (eg, Percutaneous Endoscopic Gastrostomy; PEG) or until patient recovery. The NPSA estimates that “thousands of NGT are placed each day” throughout the UK.1 However, following a literature review we were unable to find any outcome data for this procedure.
Methods We performed a retrospective review of our nutrition database at Basildon and Thurrock University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, that serves a population of 375 000, for all patients who had an NGT inserted between years 2001 and 2011 and analysed the insertion reason and outcome.
Results Over a 10-year period, 2526 patients underwent 2715 episodes of NGT insertions, with a male to female ratio of 49.5% and 50.5%, respectively. The total number of feeding days was 50 584, with a median and mean length of insertion of 10 and 18.7 days, respectively. 189 patients required a repeat NG feeding episode, either within the same or subsequent hospital admission. The referral reasons and outcome data are shown in the Abstract PMO-074 table 1 below.
Conclusion Data analysis revealed that two thirds of all NGT insertions were for patients with dysphagia secondary to a neurological condition, mechanical obstruction or artificial ventilation. Despite these patients being unwell and high risk for complications 46.9% were able to restart oral feeding. However, almost an equal number died while receiving NGT enteral feeding. 2.7% of our cohort were discharged home with some form of long term enteral feeding; either via a PEG or longterm NGT.
Competing interests None declared.
Reference 1. Patient safety alert NPSA/2011/PSA002: reducing the harm caused by misplaced nasogastric feeding tubes in adults, children and infants. 2011. Supporting Information.
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