Children's Emergency Department is now located in Children's Tower: 1001 E. Marshall Street.

Learn more
View alerts close
G-tube nutrition


Feeding through the G-tube

There are three methods to feeding through the G-tube (click on each to view a video).

  1. Gravity feeding through a bag
  2. Gravity feeding through an open syringe
  3. Pump feeding

What type of nutrition will you be using?

  • This will be discussed with your nutritionist before the G-tube is inserted.

What does it mean to "rack" the feed?

  • Please place the open syringe about 6 to 8 inches above your child’s stomach as instructed above to vent the tube.
  • You can then pour small amounts of fluid into the syringe allowing gravity to assist with the flow while allowing the stomach to decompress or burp at the same time. This is called “racking” the feed through the G-tube.
  • To use the pump to help you set the amount of tube feed to enter in the stomach, you first enter the rate of tube feed on the pump and then place the tip of the pump tubing into the open racked syringe while allowing the stomach to decompress or vent through the open racked syringe.

How do you increase the rate of tube feed?

You will start the tube feed at a low rate after surgery and gradually advance the rate of the tube feed as your child tolerates the feed.

There are four options for tube feed: standard, rapid, expedited and tube feed advancement plan. Your surgeon/nutritionist will place you in one of these groups. Please follow the appropriate instructions carefully and please do not deviate from the plan.

Please note: the G-tube will need to be flushed after every feed. The amount of flush may vary depending on your child, but the usual amount is 10 mL of water.

Standard plan after surgery & rapid plan after surgery

These plans are continuing to be developed and refined. We will post the plans here once they are finalized.

Expedited plan after surgery

  • You will be able to head home after surgery once your child awakes from anesthesia. You will follow up with us from home through telemedicine. You will be instructed as to how to have this arranged before you leave the hospital.
  • If applicable, feeds by mouth can be started anytime after surgery.
  • Please leave the G-tube capped for at least few days after surgery. You will then be instructed how to start the tube feeds after.