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Tube Feeding Tips: Syringe Alternative
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Syringe Alternative

Marie using he mechanism to hold her syringe while
she fills it with formula. Photos by Andrew Conaway.

     

As a polio survivor, one of my priorities must be to prevent overuse damage. Thus I’m constantly looking for ways to prevent putting undue stress on my body. These tips might help tube users with arthritis and other degenerative conditions.

After a few months of bolus feedings with a 60 cc syringe and plunger, I realized that continuing to hold my syringe, use the plunger, and open the tab top cans would ruin my hands — my ticket to independence. The repetitive motion and pressure of the feedings were doing me in. I tried Kangaroo bags on a pole, but that didn’t work. So I asked for a home health occupational therapist (OT) who had experience with feeding-tube users. She and I began looking for simple alternatives to do feedings, such as a makeshift syringe holder that I could comfortably connect from a sitting position.

I discovered a hair dryer holder (see photo) in the Wright Stuff catalogue (www.wrightstuff.biz or 877-750-0376) and the OT custom-molded a piece from splinting material that would fit it and hold the syringe. I have used the adapted feeding-tube holder for over a year. The base slips under my legs and anchors firmly in place.

I also found a “3-in-1” can opener that takes all the stress off my wrist and fingers (www.pattersonmedical.com). My OT identified appropriate wrist and hand splints and customized them for me. All these small changes have enabled me to keep doing my own feedings with no stress on my body.

—Marie Latta

 

more Calendar

2/6/2017 » 2/10/2017
Feeding Tube Awareness Week

2/18/2017 » 2/21/2017
Oley exhibit at A.S.P.E.N.'s Clinical Nutrition Week

5/6/2017
Oley Regional Conference

This website is an educational resource. It is not intended to provide medical advice or recommend a course of treatment. You should discuss all issues, ideas, suggestions, etc. with your clinician prior to use. Clinicians in a relevant field have reviewed the medical information; however, the Oley Foundation does not guarantee the accuracy of the information presented, and is not liable if information is incorrect or incomplete. If you have questions please contact Oley staff.

 

Updated in 2015 with a generous grant from Shire, Inc. 

 

This website was updated in 2015 with a generous grant from Shire, Inc. This website is an educational resource. It is not intended to provide medical advice or recommend a course of treatment. You should discuss all issues, ideas, suggestions, etc. with your clinician prior to use. Clinicians in a relevant field have reviewed the medical information; however, the Oley Foundation does not guarantee the accuracy of the information presented, and is not liable if information is incorrect or incomplete. If you have questions please contact Oley staff.
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