What are the indications for percutaneous endoscopic gastrostomy (PEG) tube placement?

Updated: Dec 13, 2018
  • Author: Gaurav Arora, MD, MS; Chief Editor: Danny A Sherwinter, MD  more...
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Answer

Broadly, the two main indications for PEG tube placement are as follows:

  • Establishment of enteral access for feeding
  • Gut decompression

Patients who are unable to move food from their mouth to their stomach are the ones who commonly need PEG tube placement. This includes those with neurologic disorders such as stroke, cerebral palsy, brain injury, amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, [8] and impaired swallowing. [9]  In addition, patients who have trauma, cancer, or recent surgery of the upper gastrointestinal tract or the respiratory tract may require this procedure to maintain nutritional intake.

Gut decompression may be needed in patients who have abdominal malignancies causing gastric outlet or small-bowel obstruction or ileus.

In pediatric patients, some studies have found that laparoscopy-assisted gastrostomy is associated with a lower risk of major complications than PEG is. [10, 11]


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