A feeding tube is a plastic tube that is used to bypass chewing and swallowing in a patient who is not able to eat or drink safely.


  • Providing nutrition: Food, in liquid form, can be provided through a feeding tube. Tube feeding, or enteral nutrition, can be given through the tube to provide carbohydrates, protein, and fats to the body without requiring the patient to swallow or chew.
  • Providing fluids: Water can be provided through a feeding tube to keep the patient hydrated without needing to give IV fluids.
  • Providing medication: Medications, including many pills and tablets, can be given through a feeding tube. Tablets may require grinding and some capsules may need to be opened, but if the particles are small enough most medications can be blended with water and administered through a feeding tube.

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