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Document Type

Thesis - University Access Only

Award Date


Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)


Graduate Nursing

First Advisor

Diana Sorenson


enteral feeding, enteral feeding, equipment and supplies, sanitation, microbial growth


Enteral tube feeding (ETF) is used to provide nutrition via the gastrointestinal tract to individuals who are unable to meet their nutritional needs safely or adequately with oral intake. The ETF solution may support microbial growth when this growth is introduced into the ETF delivery system. Adverse patient conditions have been associated with large amounts and/or unacceptable types of microbial growth in ETF. This study investigated the prevalence of microbial growth in aspects of the ETF delivery system on single given days in 2 midsize north central hospitals. Methods of care of some aspects of the ETF delivery system were explored as well as potential adverse patient conditions in respect to microbial growth in ETF. Microbial growth that exceeded the established standards was found. Methods of care of equipment studied was associated with varying microbial growth, but was not found to be of statistical significance. Adverse patient conditions associated with microbial growth in ETF are difficult to definitively identify.

Library of Congress Subject Headings

Enteral feeding
Enteral feeding -- Equipment and supplies -- Sanitation
Microbial growth



Number of Pages



South Dakota State University


Copyright © 1995 Carol McGinnis. All rights reserved