Feeding tube question

linda1120 Member Posts: 389
edited March 2014 in Esophageal Cancer #1
We are doing well dealing with Jim's feeding tube, but I have some questions that I believe you who have them or have had them can answer better than the "pros." Jim is progressing well, but has no desire to drink fluids or eat a "thick liquid" diet. He says he is not hungry or thirsty.
The rep who brought out the pump and supplies said he is getting 80% of his hydration from the prepared "food," and he needs to drink the other 20%. I do not want to pressure him to drink and wonder why I can't just give him extra hydration through the tube. The doctor has him on the pump fourteen hours a day to get his nutritional needs met. OSHU's teams average weight loss is 10-15 lbs after a MIE. As he starts eating they will adjust the liquid food. I give him two full syringes of water before and after the liquid food twice a day. I also add 20cc of water before and after each med.

Any suggestions would be helpful. I want to be sure he is staying well hydrated.

We have a quiet life here at the hotel and it has been good for both of us. He is resting and healing and I am recuperating after the last three months on the roller coaster ride from Hell!

p.s. We are also so very grateful to God on High that Jim pulled through this with so much going against him.


  • linda1120
    linda1120 Member Posts: 389
    p.s. Hotel Living

    Yesterday was a wonderful day having Jim come home to me. I have become quite proficient with the feeding tube. We are keeping a pretty low profile, but Jim and I take our walks to keep him active. I have learned to crush pills, dissolve them, and am using all kinds of syringes, flushing tubes,tube feeding, etc. We've had a couple of leaks so I did laundry while taking a shower today!:-) Boy do I appreciate my washer and dryer at home. We were both exhausted yesterday and went to bed at 8pm! I am usually a night owl so that was really unusual. I have had to be in my "Sarg" mode and Wow, I don't know how William and Loretta do all they do, I am wiped out taking care of Jim and my needs!

    Jim continues to do well. He is still coughing up a lot of gunk and I wondered if that is normal? He ate jello today for the first time. The feeding tube food is calculated to give him enough calories, fiber, and vitamins and minerals for his height and weight. He will weigh on Thursday when he sees the surgeon.

    Thank you all for the continual prayers, comments, and concern. We both appreciate it so much.
    I will be forever grateful to this group. Jim could not have survived a Ivor-Lewis with his heart and that is where we were headed until I was advised to get that second opinion at a high volume cancer center. We too needed a very skilled team of surgeons with Jim's ec in the celiac node. Between that and his heart, we were both prepared for the worst, and prayed and hoped for the best. I do believe that "The Great Physician" was guiding those surgeons. God isn't finished with either one of us yet. We have more to do and God willing we will. I continually speak to women about ovarian cancer and post to the Ovarian lists to let them know that there are longterm survivors. I share my story and they tell me it gives them hope. I want to do the same for EC. This ec is truly a beast and people need to be aware of it. Our circle of friends and family have been thoroughly educated, and we share with others all of the time.

    It can be such a preventable cancer.

  • Susan_E
    Susan_E Member Posts: 9
    Water Through Feeding Tube
    My dad has had a J-tube for the past month and has had no desire to drink liquids by mouth. We give him water through his feeding tube four times a day (300 cc each time). This also flushes the line to prevent it from clogging.

    One thing my dad has started to do is to swish ice cold water in his mouth. He says it feels good and cools him down. He's been in the hospital for a few days, so they've given him a suction wand that makes it easy for him to extract the water from his mouth without swallowing.
  • Tina Blondek
    Tina Blondek Member Posts: 1,500 Member
    Good News!
    Hello Linda and Jim
    Thanks for your recent update. Sounds real good. I am happy to read that Jim is doing well with the feeding tube. I think pretty soon he will start wanting to drink, or eat things like jello or popsicles. It is a very slow process. Giving him the water through the feeding tube is a great idea. Boy Linda, you became a pro rather quickly with knowing all about the feeding tube! Good for you. I wish you both the best. I will keep thinking of you both and praying for you. Keep up the good work, and keep us up to date. Love the new profile pic!
    Tina in Va