NG Tube Placement

  1. I know there is a board specifically for "us" students; however, I need a "real world" answer pertaining to NG tube placement verification. Our text says auscultating is no longer considered reliable and that pH is more accurate. However, my instructor demonstrated the skill using the auscultation method. Aside from X-ray, which is more effective and commonly used? Of course, I will do whatever my instructor expects to pass the skill but I am still curious????
  2. 6 Comments

  3. by   JillR
    I would say that checking the Ph is probably the most reliable way to check for NG placement, other than Xray. I check by ausculation because we have no tools to check by Ph at my facility. Just a reminder to check placement at least once a shift and always before you put anything down a NG, even if you just checked it an hour ago.

    I would ask your instructor about the discrepancy between her method and the what the book says. This is a good question and I think you need to verify the procedure with the insrtuctor.
  4. by   Doey
    I have to agree. Outside of x-ray, testing the Ph is probably the next most accurate way of determining NG tube placement. But as with JillR, at my insitution there are no tools provided to do this, so we rely on auscultation.
  5. by   lita1857
    Even in peds. and NICU we measure twice and check by auslitation in 23yrs of nursing have not seen ph done due to cost and availability. Could always put in place tape and place end in cup of water...anyone remember this? And VERY smart student ALWAYS do what instructor wants! You'll do GREAT you already know to question...Best of luck
  6. by   John_G
    hi all! new to group and just wanted to give input on Auscultation VS. PH on ngt placement. I work for The VA hosp in St. Louis and up until 2 years ago, auscultation was considered acceptable. Now its done by PH. Im not sure how expensive this actually is, Just ph paper with a color coded graph to indicate the Gastric PH level. Happy Hunting!!

  7. by   GraceLPN
    Hi, I work in the NICU and we check placement by auscultation. Have never seen it done by pH, although it is supposed to be more reliable.
  8. by   Brandi Heard
    I think that the best way to test the placement of the NG tube is to either insert air into the stomach, or aspirate some of the gastric juices. I feel that this is something that should be done each time the procedure is preformed, to decrease the chances of misplaced tubing.