[Skip to Navigation]
Access to paid content on this site is currently suspended due to excessive activity being detected from your IP address Please contact the publisher to request reinstatement.
July 1961

Complications of Gastrointestinal Intubation

Author Affiliations

From the Department of General Surgery, Henry Ford Hospital.

Arch Surg. 1961;83(1):147-160. doi:10.1001/archsurg.1961.01300130151018

As early as 1790 John Hunter of London reported the use of a stomach tube for the purpose of feeding a patient with paralysis of the muscles of deglutition.1,2 Since that time, however, a long period elapsed, so that only an occasional sporadic report concerning the use of gastric tubes appeared in the literature throughout the nineteenth century. Consequently, it was not until the first 4 decades of the present century that the innovation of an entirely new armamentarium for our approach to gastrointestinal problems was witnessed. In 1921 Levin3 described the smooth catheter-tipped tube which is in common usage today and now bears his name. Later, in 1931, Wangensteen4-6 demonstrated the advantage of upper gastrointestinal decompression in acute mechanical obstruction. Shortly after this, in 1933, Wangensteen and Paine pointed out the advantage of constant suction over siphonage in decompressing the upper gastrointestinal tract. Since that time