Percutaneous Endoscopic Gastrostomy (PEG)

PEG (Percutaneous Endoscopic Gastrostomy) is a procedure used to place a flexible feeding tube through the abdominal wall and into the stomach. This feeding tube allows nutrition, fluids, and/or medications to be put directly into the stomach instead of by using the mouth and esophagus. It is placed for those who have difficulty swallowing, problems with appetite, or inability to have adequate nutrition by mouth. The risks and benefits, and possibility of complications will be discussed with you by your doctor prior to your procedure.

For your PEG placement, the stomach should be completely empty. You should have nothing to eat or drink for at least 6 hours prior to your procedure. This includes water, gum, and/or mints. Your physician will instruct you regarding the time to begin fasting depending on the time of your procedure. You may brush your teeth, but do not swallow the water.

You will be sedated during the procedure so you must make arrangements to have someone drive you home. Sedation can affect your judgment and reflexes for the entire day. You will not be able to drive, drink alcohol, or operate machinery until the next day.

Prior to the procedure, you will have an intravenous inserted. Your nurse will obtain a full medical history from you including medical conditions, medications you take, and family history. You will be brought to the procedure room on a stretcher and a heart monitor, blood pressure cuff and pulse oximetry monitor will be placed. You will also receive oxygen through a small tube under your nose. A small plastic bite guard will be gently placed between your teeth to protect the scope. Once you are positioned and monitored, sedation will be administered through your intravenous by our Anesthesiologist. You will drift off to sleep before your procedure begins.

You will receive an antibiotic within 1 hour prior to your PEG tube being placed.

Your doctor will place the tube using a flexible scope to guide the creation of a small opening through the skin in the upper abdomen into the stomach. It will be secured and a dressing will be placed following the procedure. Your doctor will arrange for instructions on how to use and care for you feeding tube.

Once the procedure is complete you will awaken quickly and remain in the Post Anesthesia Care Suite until you are ready to go home, usually within 1-11/2 hours. Your throat may be a little sore, and you may fell slightly bloated right after the procedure because of the air/water in your stomach introduced during the exam. This should pass quickly. Your physician will explain the results to you after your procedure or at your follow up visit.

PEG tubes can last for months or years, but because they can get clogged or break down, they might need to be replaced. Your doctor can remove or replace your PEG tube with or without anesthesia. If no replacement is needed the PEG site closes quickly after the tube is removed. Accidental removal/dislodgement requires immediate attention.

A very important issue to discuss with your doctor is the ability to continue to eat or drink after the procedure. Special liquid nutrition and fluids are given through the PEG tube.

Following are instructions which will also be given to you by your doctor. Please review them and follow them as directed.

On the day of your procedure: Plan to arrive at the time designated by your physician.

  • Please bring your insurance card, Photo ID, insurance co-pay and all forms completed.
  • Please do not apply lotion before the procedure.
  • Please come accompanied by another adult or plan for a ride home – you will not be able to drive for 24 hours following sedation.
  • Please bring a list of your medications you are currently taking with the dosage and times including vitamins and herbal supplements.
  • If you take blood thinners, aspirin, Motrin, anti-inflammatory medication, notify your physician prior to your procedure.
  • If you are taking Blood Pressure medication, heart medication or seizure medication – you make take that in the morning with a sip of water.
  • Diabetic patients – Consult your PCP regarding medication the day of the procedure – your blood sugar level will be taken the day of the procedure.
  • Parking is available in the parking garage.
  • If you have any medical questions, please contact your doctor.