The decision to initiate enteral feedings is multifaceted, involving medical, financial, cultural, and emotional considerations. Children who have developmental or acquired disabilities are at risk for having primary and secondary conditions that affect growth and nutritional wellbeing. This clinical report provides (1) an overview of clinical issues in children who have developmental or acquired disabilities that may prompt a need to consider nonoral feedings, (2) a systematic way to support the child and family in clinical decisions related to initiating nonoral feeding, (3) information on surgical options that the family may need to consider in that decision-making process, and (4) pediatric guidance for ongoing care after initiation of nonoral feeding intervention, including care of the gastrostomy tube and skin site. Ongoing medical and psychosocial support is needed after initiation of nonoral feedings and is best provided through the collaborative efforts of the family and a team of professionals that may include the pediatrician, dietitian, social worker, and/or therapists.
- Nonoral feeding
- Shared decisionmaking
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health