Blenderized Tube Feeding Use in Adult Home Enteral Nutrition Patients: A Cross-Sectional Study

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Abstract

Background:

Use of long-term enteral nutrition (EN) has increased dramatically in the United States. It has been the authors' experience that most home EN (HEN) patients use blenderized tube feeding (BTF) in addition to commercial EN. There are limited resources available for patients interested in BTF, and studies evaluating safety and effectiveness are limited.

Methods:

The authors conducted a prospective cross-sectional study (n = 54). Inclusion criteria: age >18 years, follow-up in HEN clinic, prescribed commercial EN. Participants were provided the survey at HEN follow-up appointments after receiving HEN for at least 3 weeks.

Results:

Median age (range) was 60.5 (22–87) years with 42.6% females (n = 23). BTF was used by 55.5% of patients (n = 30). Most (57%; n = 31) received HEN for >6 months. BTF use was a median of 4 (1–7) days per week. Most common reasons for using BTF were as follows: it is more natural (43%), like eating what their family does (33%), and tolerate BTF better (30%). In patients who use BTF, 80% reported maintaining goal body weight. BTF resulted in significantly less reported nausea, vomiting, bloating, diarrhea, and constipation compared with commercial EN.

Conclusions:

This is the first study to evaluate BTF use in an adult HEN population. More than 50% of our patients used and approximately 80% expressed a desire to use BTF if provided with adequate information. With new connection tube changes coming in the near future, adequate adapters for BTF need to be developed. (Nutr Clin Pract. 2015;30:824–829)

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