CLINICAL DO'S AND DON'TS: Administering medication through a gastrostomy tube

December 2002 
Volume 32  Number 12
Pages 22 - 22
  PDF Version Available!


  • DO

  • DON'T


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  • A GASTROSTOMY TUBE (GT) is an enteral feeding device placed endoscopically, radiologically, or surgically with its tip in the patient's stomach. Your primary goal when administering medication through a GT is to optimize the drug's therapeutic action without interfering with enteral nutrition.


    * Check to see whether the prescribed drug should be given on an empty or full stomach and whether tube feedings should be held (and for how long) before and after administering it.

    * Give liquid medications whenever possible to prevent clogging and enhance absorption. Dilute with at least 30 ml of water.

    * If a medication is available only in tablet form, check with the pharmacist before crushing it. ...

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