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September 1952


Author Affiliations

From the Department of Surgery, University Hospital, Ohio State University College of Medicine.

AMA Arch Surg. 1952;65(3):358-366. doi:10.1001/archsurg.1952.01260020372003

THE RESTORATION and maintenance of an adequate nutritional status in patients unable to eat by mouth continue to be trying problems despite the emphasis that has been placed on the importance of nutrition in the surgical literature during recent years.1 Ordinarily in such situations intravenous administration of the required fluids is practiced, though this method has serious shortcomings when its use is necessary for more than a few days. These disadvantages include the danger of overloading the circulation in cardiac patients, prolonged periods of immobilization, and the difficulty of providing adequate amounts of calories and protein. In some situations feeding by means of a nasogastric tube has been attended by excellent results, and this method is particularly useful when a small caliber polyethylene tube is employed in conjunction with a force pump. However, this method in certain instances is impracticable because of such factors as mechanical obstruction to the

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