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Home > Patients & Visitors > Health Library > Tube Feeding: Living With a Feeding Tube
Your body needs nutrition to stay strong and help you live a healthy life. If you're unable to eat, or if you have an illness that makes it hard to swallow food, you may need a feeding tube. The tube is surgically inserted into your stomach and is used to give food, liquids, and medicines.
Depending on why you need a feeding tube, you may have it for several weeks or months or for the rest of your life. Having a feeding tube means learning new skills and adopting new routines. You'll need to learn how to use and care for the tube, and how to avoid common problems.
It's important that the food you use for tube feeding have the right blend of nutrients for you. And the food needs to be the correct thickness so the tube doesn't clog. For most people, a milk shake type of formula that you can buy in a can works best for tube feeding. Your doctor or dietitian will help you find the right formula to use.
January 10, 2012
Adam Husney, MD - Family Medicine & Rhonda O'Brien, MS, RD, CDE - Certified Diabetes Educator
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