Published May 19, 2002
Ok guys. Heres one for you. I worked Med-Surg almost 12 years ago and worked with ALOT of G-tubes, but we didn't D/C them in the hospital setting. Anyway I have an 87 year old grandmother who lives 100's of miles away who had one at home and she went to the MD office the other day and it was D/C'd. I then receive a frantic letter from my aunt, the caregiver. Here, I will copy and paste her letter, along with her questions. Anyway I need your help here guys....Stormy
Granny has a urinary tract infection. She's feeling pretty awful but she does NOT want to go to the hospital. I took her to the doctor on Friday. They gave her a shot in the office and a prescription for an antibiotic... omigosh $102..!!!! Also, she had her tube removed on Thursday. I don't understand it but all they did was to pull it out. I thought they told me that there was a plastic piece on the inside just like on the outside to keep it from getting pulled out. If they just pulled it out, what happened to that plastic piece. Is it just floating around somewhere inside her? And can that be a good thing? Also it seems to me that would leave a hole in her stomach - and wouldn't the food she eats leak out?? I had to work and wasn't able to take her to the doctor for this, so Ken took her. And he doesn't know what questions to ask.
Yesterday she was vomiting and breaking out in a sweat. I don't know whether that is related to the UTI or the G-tube being removed. She seems a little better today. Yesterday, everytime I transferred her from one place to another, she was nauseated...
The N/V and sweating can accompany a UTI-especially in the elderly.
I don't think there are any G tubes that have to be surgicly removed...I know that here in WA medicaid won't pay for it.
As for there being something on the inside to keep the tube from coming out, what it is depends on the type...ask some detailed questions...
Was there a mushroom like thing on the end when it came out?
Did it seem to take a lot of tugging?
(I have removed a lot of PEG tubes and you give firm pressure until the mushroom pops the 'pther direction' then you work it out like a button through a tight button hole).
Did they draw anthing out with a syringe (like a foley)?
Did is slip out without much effort?
Hope this helps a little.
As for it being "left open" I assume you mean they didn't sew it shut...
It can be pretty messy for a couple of days but they do close (as do trachs)...I'm guessing that it has to do with the mucosal layer wanting to stick to its self.
NurseDennie, BSN, RN
I've seen them D/C more than one tube like that. One person they gave a bit of sedative to and he slept right through it, and the other one was awake and watched. No problems. Neither person seemed to be traumatized by the procedure at all.
They have a larger end (like the mushroom) that kids-r-fun mentioned that holds them in, I've never seen one that had a plactice piece on the inside that could pop off and stay in the stomach.
And I also agree that n/v is a very common s/s for UTI especially in older women. I hope she feels much better, soon!!!
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