What is a PEG tube?

A percutaneous endoscopic gastrostomy feed tube consists of a narrow, flexible tube which is inserted through the skin and directly into the stomach.

PEG feeding allows direct administration of foods, medicines and fluids into the user’s stomach and is much more comfortable than tube feeding via the nose (nasogastric feeding).

It’s also easier for users to hide the PEG feed tube under clothing, so they are less self-conscious when away from the home.

Small discs on the outside of the body and inside the stomach prevent the movement or entire removal of the PEG tube.

These types of feeding tubes are increasingly common and are used for people that experience difficulty swallowing or people who cannot eat and drink sufficient amounts, such as cystic fibrosis or kidney dialysis patients.

Just so long as the bowels work normally, PEG feeding is a recommended solution for people with long-term needs for help with feeding.

Other reasons PEG feeding tubes are fitted is if patients are at risk of food entering the lungs rather the stomach, perhaps due to the effects of a stroke or a weakness in the muscles.

PEG feeding tubes are also used for people with conditions like Crohn’s disease, bowel cancer or after head injuries. C

hildren with problems swallowing can also be fitted with PEG tubes.

Complications that can arise as a result of PEG feeding

Most people fitted with PEG tubes don’t experience any problems at all.

The tube can be a little uncomfortable in the first few hours after fitting, and some people experience pain for up to a week after fitting.

Some minor complications that can occur are infections of the skin in the area around the tube or leaks from the tube.

In very rare cases the following complications can arise for PEG tube users:

– breathing problems
– bleeding
– perforation of the bowel
– stomach infections

There is also a slight risk of death resulting from PEG tube insertion.

These issues make it important for health and social care workers to receive PEG feeding training, in order to spot any problems that may arise at the very earliest opportunity.

PEG Feeding Training

Ideally, PEG feed training should be delivered physically, as there are some practical elements in the course.

Following training, health and social care workers will have the confidence to use PEG feed equipment and will be aware of any problems that could occur as a result of PEG feeding.

PEG feeding courses are also ideal for dieticians as they offer essential support for dieticians working with PEG tube users and their carers.

What does the course cover?

Courses tend to cover the following areas:

– Explanation about PEG feeding and the sorts of conditions which could require PEG feeding
– The indications and any contra-indications of PEG feeding
– Procedures used for the administration of food and medication via the PEG tube
– Essential care for enteral feed tubes
– Ways to handle any complications
– Record keeping

Workers will find that attending PEG feeding courses provides all the knowledge and skills to support their clients and patients with the delivery of an appropriate PEG feed routine.

PEG feeding training from Caring for Care

Caring for Care provide a three-hour refresher PEG feeding training course and a six-hour course for beginners, which includes practical competency sessions.

All delegates will achieve far greater understanding and awareness of PEG feeding and will achieve greater knowledge of the different kinds of PEG feeding and ways to administer medications.

This includes the use of PEG feeding machines, and all delegates will receive full training in the safe operation of this machinery.

All our courses have the following structure:

– Details on the reasons for and purpose of PEG feeding
– Analysis of the sort of conditions requiring PEG feeding
– The indicators and contra-indicators of PEG feeding
– Procedures for administering medicines and feeding via PEG
– How to recognise, deal with and report any complications that arise
– Maintenance and care of enteral feed tubes
– The procedures needed for effective mouth care
– Record keeping and documentation

All courses are certificated.

Six hour PEG feeding training sessions

Our six-hour training session includes instruction in the safe operation of PEG machines and all delegates will have the opportunity to use the machine and all associated equipment.

Clients with a requirement for specialised training on one specific PEG feeding machine will need to provide access to the equipment in order for practical sessions to take place.

Our expert trainers deliver courses at just the right level to engage with all workers and ensure they develop the confidence to work with service users fitted with a PEG.

The six-hour PEG feeding training offered by Caring for Care also offers a competency framework and sign off record for training purposes for all delegates.

Learning outcomes from all our PEG feeding courses include:

– Greater awareness of feeding and medication administration via PEG tubes

– Understanding of the most common reasons PEG feeding is required and the safe, effective ways to care for people with PEG tubes

– Confidence in the use of PEG machines, the administration of feeds and care of all associated tubing

We provide open PEG feeding courses at various UK locations, so you can book delegates onto any available course in your own area.

Alternatively, we can offer training at your own base or any other location, although as noted above if you wish delegates to be trained in the use of specific PEG machines you will need to supply the machine for the duration of the course.

All our PEG feeding courses are led by suitably qualified professionals with a deep appreciation of the challenges faced by workers across all sectors of health care.

Get in touch with us to find out more or discuss your training needs in detail.

Photo: Gravity Feed Bag by MaryBethWrites licensed under Creative Commons 4.0