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      Radiological insertion of gastrostomy in patients in whom endoscopy was unsuccessful.

      Digestive and liver disease : official journal of the Italian Society of Gastroenterology and the Italian Association for the Study of the Liver

      Treatment Failure, Aged, Aged, 80 and over, Endoscopy, Gastrointestinal, Gastrostomy, methods, Head and Neck Neoplasms, therapy, Humans, Intubation, Gastrointestinal, Middle Aged, Radiography, Interventional, Retrospective Studies

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          Endoscopy is the standard technique of percutaneous gastrostomy placement, but failure of placement may occur due to difficulty with intubation or previous abdominal surgery. A review of personal experience is made. Between January 1997 and May 1998, 90 gastrostomy devices were successfully placed endoscopically in our unit. Endoscopic placement was unsuccessful in 3 patients and not attempted in a further 7 because of oro-pharyngeal obstruction. These 10 patients (6 male, 4 female, aged 51-84 years) had advanced neuro-degenerative disease or malignancy of the head and neck or oesophagus. All patients underwent radiological insertion of a gastrostomy tube by the 'push' method after insufflation of air into the stomach via a naso-gastric tube. Radiological insertion of gastrostomy device was successful in 9 out of 10 patients. Failure occurred in 1 patient due to inability to pass a naso-gastric tube and surgical gastrostomy was required. Pain at the gastrostomy site was the most common problem post-procedure and 4 patients still required analgesia on discharge. One patient developed a wound infection. There were no procedure-related deaths. The 30-day mortality due to all causes was 20%. Only 1 patient remained alive at 6 months. Availability of a radiologist trained in the placement of percutaneous gastrostomy allowed 99% of such devices to be placed percutaneously, even in those patients in whom endoscopy was not possible. However advanced underlying disease in this patient group results in a high mortality.

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