WHAT IS A GASTROSTOMY or JEJUNOSTOMY TUBE (G-TUBE / J-TUBE)?
In April 2004, Camille had a MIC-Key Gastrostomy tube (G-tube) placed during a Nissen Fundoplication surgery to resolve severe Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease (GERD). Camille required a second surgery in May 2005 to repair her Nissen Fundoplication. During this procedure, Camille had an additional feeding tube placed in her intestines due to a deterioration in her gastrointestinal functioning.
Currently, Camille receives the majority of her nutrition and medication through a feeding tube. With intensive feeding therapy, she has improved her swallowing function and can now safely tolerate small amounts of pureed food by mouth.
A gastrostomy tube (G-tube) is a thin, hollow tube that is put through the skin into the stomach through a small surgical opening (stoma). A jejunostomy tube is similar to a G-tube, but is placed in the intestines. These tubes can be used to give a child liquid food, fluids and some medicines.
WHY IS A G-TUBE NEEDED?
Some babies and children cannot take in enough food when eating and drinking by mouth. A G-tube may help a child to:
• increase food, fluid and calorie intake when she is not able to suck and swallow well, or has a chronic illness
• make feeding less tiring
• overcome health concerns that prevent feeding by mouth
• decrease choking and aspiration (aspiration is food or liquid going into the lungs. This can cause pneumonia and lung damage). For children with these concerns, G-tube feedings are helpful for proper growth, healing and development.