Preventing Patients from Dislodging Nasogastric Tube

Tuesday, 13 July 2010

Sujata Rajaram, BSN, MSN
Department of Geriatrics- Ward 3/ Geriatric Medicine, Alexandra Hospital, Singapore, Singapore

Learning Objective 1: 1) To promote patient’s comfort in anchoring of nasogastric tube

Learning Objective 2: 2)To prevent patient from dislodging nasogastric tube

Purpose: A one-month data from ward 3 between 5th December 06 and 5TH December 07 showed that 21 patients were in nasogastric tube and 8 (38%) patients pulled out the tubes This findings may be a common occurrence but studies have shown that that there are serious implications on patient’s safety.Not only does reinsertion of nasogastric tube causes discomfoert and trauma to the patient, but also a dislodged tube is associated with the risk of tracheobronchial aspiration of gastric contents. Gonzalez CL, et al, 1975 stated that aspiration pneumonia is associated with a mortality rate of 45% among hospitalised elderly patients.
 To have 0 incidence of inpatients removing nasogastric tube in ward 3(Geriatric Medicine) in Alexandra Hospital within 3 months
Method: Using the 80-20 rule the key root causes were identified (the cause and effect diagram) and the following were implemented Physical restrainers were used before implementation The hand mitten was created and redesigned, it was washable, comfortable to use and does not restrict patient’s movements. To promote patient’s comfort the anchoring of nasogastric tube was introduced using the bolster method.
Results: A post implementation survey showed that patients on the mittens did not remove the feeding tubes and so not require re-insertion.
Conclusion: The design was put on trial at the ward and positive feedback received from caregivers was that the mittens not only prevented the patients from removing tubes and lines but allowed free movement of upper limbs, preventing self-injury, scratching but enhanced patient safety and care in