Percutaneous Endoscopic Gastrostomy (PEG)

  • Medical Author:
    Jay W. Marks, MD

    Jay W. Marks, MD, is a board-certified internist and gastroenterologist. He graduated from Yale University School of Medicine and trained in internal medicine and gastroenterology at UCLA/Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles.

  • Medical Editor: William C. Shiel Jr., MD, FACP, FACR
    William C. Shiel Jr., MD, FACP, FACR

    William C. Shiel Jr., MD, FACP, FACR

    Dr. Shiel received a Bachelor of Science degree with honors from the University of Notre Dame. There he was involved in research in radiation biology and received the Huisking Scholarship. After graduating from St. Louis University School of Medicine, he completed his Internal Medicine residency and Rheumatology fellowship at the University of California, Irvine. He is board-certified in Internal Medicine and Rheumatology.

woman with abdominal pain

Percutaneous endoscopic gastrostomy facts

  • Percutaneous endoscopic gastrostomy is a procedure that allows nutritional support for patients who cannot take food orally. Percutaneous endoscopic gastrostomy involves placement of a tube through the abdominal wall and into the stomach through which nutritional liquids can be infused.
  • Percutaneous endoscopic gastrostomy is a surgical procedure; however, it does not require opening the abdomen or an operating room. Percutaneous endoscopic gastrostomy also does not require general anesthesia.
  • Complications of percutaneous endoscopic gastrostomy include infection, leakage of nutritional liquids that are infused and clogging of the tube.
  • Percutaneous endoscopic gastrostomy is preferable to surgical gastrostomy

What is percutaneous endoscopic gastrostomy (PEG)?

Percutaneous endoscopic gastrostomy (PEG) is a surgical procedure for placing a tube for feeding without having to perform an open operation on the abdomen (laparotomy). It is used in patients who will be unable to take in food by mouth for a prolonged period of time. A gastrostomy, or surgical opening into the stomach, is made through the skin using an a flexible, lighted instrument (endoscope) passed orally into the stomach to assist with the placement of the tube and secure it in place.

What is the purpose of percutaneous endoscopic gastrostomy (PEG)?

The purpose of a percutaneous endoscopic gastrostomy is to feed those patients who cannot swallow food. Irrespective of the age of the patient or their medical condition, the purpose of percutaneous endoscopic gastrostomy is to provide fluids and nutrition directly into the stomach.

Medically Reviewed by a Doctor on 6/10/2015

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