Gastrostomy: Permanent and Temporary
by Editorial Staff And Contributors
This is surgery to place a tube through the abdomen and into the stomach. Gastrostomy can be done as:
Reasons for Procedure TOP
A gastrostomy tube provides an alternative feeding site. It may be needed to:
Possible Complications TOP
Problems from the procedure are rare, but all procedures have some risk. Your doctor will review potential problems, like:
Complications are more common in older adults. Factors that may increase the risk of complications include:
Be sure to discuss these risks with your doctor before the surgery.
What to Expect TOP
Prior to Procedure
Your doctor will likely do the following:
Leading up to your procedure:
General anesthesia will be used. It will block any pain and keep you asleep through the surgery.
Description of the Procedure TOP
If you are unable to undergo PEG, this will be done as an open procedure. In some cases, gastrostomy may be done at the same time as another stomach surgery. An incision will be made through the skin, abdominal wall, and into the stomach. A tube will then be placed through the skin and into the stomach. This tube will be stitched in place. The incision will be closed.
Immediately After Procedure TOP
The doctor will make sure that the tube is placed correctly. You will be moved to the recovery room and monitored closely.
How Long Will It Take? TOP
At least 1 hour
How Much Will It Hurt? TOP
You will have pain after the surgery. Ask your doctor about medication to help with the pain.
Average Hospital Stay TOP
This procedure is done in a hospital setting. The usual length of stay is several days. Your doctor may choose to keep you longer if complications arise.
Post-procedure Care TOP
After the procedure, you can expect the following:
Call Your Doctor TOP
Call your doctor if any of these occur:
If you think you have an emergency, call for emergency medical services right away.
American College of Gastroenterology
American Society for Gastrointestinal Endoscopy
Canadian Association of Gastroenterology
Gastrostomy tube (g-tube). Kids Health—Nemours Foundation website. Available at:
...(Click grey area to select URL)
Updated January 2018. Accessed January 10, 2018.
Gastrostomy tube (g-tube) home care. Cincinnati Children's website. Available at: https://www.cincinnatichildrens.org/health/g/g-tube-care. Updated July 2016. Accessed January 10, 2018.
Last reviewed November 2018 by EBSCO Medical Review Board Daus Mahnke, MD
Last Updated: 12/20/2014
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