The differences between G (gastrostomy) tube and J (jejunostomy) tube are:
1. Site of placement:
G-tube: A G-tube is a small, flexible tube inserted in the stomach via a small cut on the abdomen.
J-tube: A J-tube is a small, flexible tube inserted into the second/middle part of the small bowel (the jejunum).
- To provide medications and nutrition
- To release stomach gases
- For gastric drainage
J-tube: It is used to provide medications and nutrition.
3. Method of placement:
G-tube: It can be placed through an endoscope, laparoscope, or by an open abdomen surgery.
J-tube: It can be placed endoscopically, laparoscopically, or via a gastric bypass procedure.
4. Changing of the tube:
G-tube: Most of the G-tubes can be changed at home.
J-tube: For most of the J-tubes, changing at home is not possible.
5. Patient selection criteria
G-tube: The G-tubes are best suited for patients with difficulty in swallowing because of:
- esophageal atresia (abnormal narrowing of the food pipe)
- tracheoesophageal fistula (abnormal communication between the food pipe and windpipe)
J-tube: It is appropriate for patients with:
- chronic vomiting
- low stomach motility
- high risk for aspiration
5. Feeding speed
G-tube: Feeding is faster because the stomach has an expandable area and fundus (upper curved part of the stomach).
J-tube: It requires slow continuous feeding with a pump.
Are PEG tubes and J tubes the same?
A percutaneous endoscopic gastrostomy (PEG) tube is a soft, plastic tube placed in the stomach through the skin (percutaneously) with the help of an endoscope. The J tube (jejunostomy tube), on the other hand, is a soft, plastic tube placed through the skin of the abdomen into the mid-section of the small intestine (the jejunum). The endoscopic approach to place a J tube is similar to the one used for the PEG tube. The difference is that the doctor uses a longer endoscope to enter into the small bowel for J tube placement.
How should I care for my percutaneous gastrostomy/jejunostomy tube at home?
You must learn to take good care of the skin around the tube to avoid getting an infection or skin irritation. Your doctor/nurse will teach you how to change the dressing around the tube every day.
- Keep the tube protected by taping it to the skin.
- Keep the skin clean and dry; you will need to change the bandages once a day or more if the area becomes wet or dirty. To keep the skin clean:
- Wash your hands well with soap and water.
- Remove dressings or bandages on the skin. Throw away the bandages/dressings in a plastic bag.
- Look for any redness, odor, pain, pus, or swelling on the skin.
- Make sure the stitches are in place.
- Clean the skin around the tube one to three times a day using a clean towel and mild soap and water. Gently try to remove any discharge or crusting on the skin and tube.
- Pat dry the skin well with a clean towel.
- Place a small piece of gauze under the disc around the tube if there is discharge.
- Do not rotate the tube.
- Place the new bandages or gauze around the tube and tape it securely to the abdomen.
- Never use creams, powders, or sprays near the site unless your nurse or doctor advises you to do so.
- Flush the tube with a syringe and warm water as instructed by your nurse/doctor. The syringe may be reused after rinsing and drying.
You must inform your doctor if:
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