Percutaneous endoscopic gastrostomy in cystic fibrosis: patient acceptance and effect of overnight tube feeding on nutritional status

Acta Gastroenterol Belg. 2004 Jul-Sep;67(3):241-4.


Background: Malnutrition remains a common problem in cystic fibrosis (CF) patients, despite pancreatic enzymes and hypercaloric diet advice. When oral supplementation fails, additional overnight gastrostomy tube-feeding is a therapeutic option.

Methods: In our centre gastrostomy tube feeding is proposed when weight for height drops below 85% despite intensive dietetic counselling. All the CF patients at our centre (n = 11) receiving gastrostomy tube feeding were evaluated for changes in nutritional status and pulmonary function. Complications of percutaneous endoscopic gastrostomy were inventarised and patients older than 7 years and all the parents were asked to fill in a questionnaire concerning subjective well-being with gastrostomy supplemental feeding.

Results: The patients received 40% of the recommended daily allowances (RDA) for energy by tube feeding. Total daily energy intake increased by 30%. Within 3 months this resulted in a significant improvement in nutritional status expressed as percentage of ideal weight for height or body mass index z-score. After 6 months a significant catch-up growth was detectable. Pulmonary function remained stable. The complications were local irritation (n = 4), night sweating (n = 1) and bed-wetting (n = 1). The gastrostomy was well accepted.

Conclusion: Gastrostomy appears to be a good and safe way to improve nutritional status, growth and mood of the CF child. As decreased pulmonary function plays a crucial role in the growth of the CF child, full normalisation of growth pattern is not achieved despite catch-up. Gastrostomy tube feeding should perhaps be used earlier to optimalise growth.

MeSH terms

  • Body Mass Index
  • Child
  • Cystic Fibrosis / complications*
  • Energy Intake
  • Enteral Nutrition
  • Female
  • Gastrostomy
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Malnutrition / complications
  • Malnutrition / therapy
  • Nutritional Status
  • Patient Acceptance of Health Care
  • Respiratory Function Tests
  • Retrospective Studies