As scary as a tube sounds, it’s a beautiful thing for many families.
There are several kinds of feeding tubes:
- A ng tube, (ng comes from Nasal-Gastric, meaning nose and stomach) which is often temporary and is inserted through the nostril.
- A g-tube (the G comes from Gastric, meaning stomach), is placed in the stomach to bypass the mouth and esophagus.
- A g-j tube (G comes from gastric, meaning stomach, and J from jejunum, which is a part of the small intestine) meaning it is placed in the stomach and jejunum, one port accesses the stomach and the other the jejunum. If there’s something that the stomach cannot tolerate, then just a j-tube is placed, directly into the jejunum, to bypass the stomach.
There are various reasons for the different tubes, and you should discuss those reasons with your doctor.
More on G-Tubes:
G-tubes are the most common feeding tubes amongst those with FOXG1. A g-tube is typically placed with a short procedure, where a scope with a lit tip is threaded down the esophagus. Once it is in the stomach, the surgeon can see the light shining through the skin and make an incision at that site to place the tube or button access. There are other ways to do this procedure, and it is ultimately up to the surgeon. Some patients stay overnight, some leave the same day – it depends on recovery and pain control. Having a tube does not mean your child cannot eat. As long as it is medically safe for your child to do so they may eat and the tube can be used for extra calories, medication administration, and hydration. The tube is there to help your child remain stable and healthy, and it’s a great way to maintain fluids when your child is sick. Many parents often hold off as long as possible, but the one thing we hear over and over is ”why didn’t we do this sooner?!” as it often has a significantly positive effect on the whole family. For more information, check out Feeding Tube Awareness.