NG tubes- Confirmation by ultrasound... - Critical Care Practitioner

NG tubes- Confirmation by ultrasound…

In my current place of work current practice is to get the initial placement of a naso-gastric tube confirmed with X-ray. This is an expensive process, traking time and exposing the patient to more x rays. If the tube is thought to have slipped, or, when checking the nurses cannot get any aspirate then we go through the process of another x ray to confirm its position. Of all the confirmation x rays I have checked NOT ONE has proved the NG to be in the wrong place.


It was with interest then that I read this article…”The effectiveness of ultrasonography in verifying the placement of a nasogastric tube in patients with low consciousness at an emergency center” which seems to demonstrate that the use of ultrasound might be worth looking into. I would suggest that one could use ultrasound to confirm placement, and where not sure only then move onto checking with an x ray.

I am pestering my boss right now to do a small feasibility study…..

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  1. Hi Johnathan

    I am currently considering this as a dissertation project. Got a while till I have to start this as only just at the end of my first year however it has been a thought for a while

    1. Let me know if you do. Would love to hear your conclusions. I am a great believer in the power of ultrasound.

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