Nutritional support for critically ill or injured patients is a routine and vital part of therapy in the ICU. Placement of small-bowel feeding tubes may be costly and time-consuming and requires specialized technical skills. In this article, the authors provide justification for enteral nutrition and describe several techniques for placement of feeding tubes, and present a modified protocol for placing feeding tubes into the small bowel at the bedside without fluoroscopy.

Nutritional support for critically ill or injured patients is a routine and vital part of therapy in the intensive care unit (ICU). Nutritional therapy is recommended to treat and prevent nutrient deficiencies and malnutrition and to improve patients’ outcomes.1 Nutritional support can be delivered enterally via the gastrointestinal system or parenterally with total parenteral nutrition (TPN).

Enteral nutrition can provide essential energy intake and protein, and the...

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