Quote from OneThunder
stopping a feeding tube is NOT routine in hospice, at least not the hospice that I work for. We are about comfort and symptom control. Tube feedings are "cut back" if the digestive system does not handle the amount of feeding that is going into the body, (thus causing vomiting, bloating or other painful symptoms) and discontinued as the digestive system shuts down . Remember, we are about COMFORT CARE.
i think you must be referring to those hospice patients that have a few months left, re: not stopping a fdg tube.
but every single fdg tube pt i've had in hospice, it has caused them considerable discomfort, albeit they were pretty advanced in their illnesses.
stopping a fdg tube and the subsequent dehydration is NOT uncomfortable at all. contrary to what most people believe, tube fdgs cause more discomfort to the dying patient. as you already mentioned, you stop it when the gi system starts shutting down but in the meantime, there are other systems that are failing, still contributing to the discomfort of fdg tubes.
when you're body is in a half-starved state, your brain releases all these endorphins that actually act as an analgesic and makes the pt more comfortable. people seem to think it's a tortorous act. it's not. and this has nothing to do with terri's case at all.
i don't know what hospice you work at, but all of my patients usually go pretty quickly UNLESS i stopped a gtube fdg, then it seems to take forever.
thank God for roxanol.
but i've also had oncs that sent me pts stating they had a few months to live and they came with fdg tubes at 100cc/hr yet there were no bowel sounds, abd distended, vomiting and i'd end up aspirating hundreds of cc's worth of gastric contents and bile. :angryfire and i would have to tell the family that their loved one would probably pass within the next few days. this has happened to me a few times.....but i'm getting sidetracked. i guess my point is, when you receive your pt, it's mandatory you do a thorough head to toe assessment as wel as talking to them and sometimes reading between the lines.