Cochrane Summaries

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Nasal versus oral route for placing feeding tubes in preterm or low birth weight infants

Watson J, McGuire W
Published Online: 
28 February 2013

When preterm or low birth weight infants are too immature or unwell to suck feeds they can receive their milk through a feeding tube passed via either the nose or the mouth. Although tubes placed via the nose may be more stable and less prone to displace than tubes passed via the mouth, there is concern that nasal tubes will partially obstruct breathing. Only three small trials were found that compared these two options and these did not find convincing evidence to support routine use of one route rather than the other.