Totally laparoscopic feeding jejunostomy
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Background: A feeding jejunostomy should be used for nutritional support in a small subset of patients. Minimal-access approaches for the placement of jejunal tubes have been described, but they often require special equipment not common to all operating theaters. We describe a technique of totally laparoscopic jejunostomy tube (LJT) placement using equipment found in most operating theaters. Methods: Thirty-five patients underwent LJT over a 12-month period. Indications included gastroparesis, anorexia nervosa, oral cancer, cerebral palsy, and Huntington's chorea. The technique involved three incisions for trocars (one for a 10-mm camera and two for 5-mm working ports) and one small incision for the tube. A 16-Fr T-tube was passed transabdominally under direct vision, and a jejunotomy was made ~20 cm distal to the ligament of Trietz. Each limb of the T-tube was passed into the lumen of the bowel, and a purse-string suture was placed around the enterotomy and tied intracorporeally. After insertion, the serosa surrounding the insertion site is tacked to the anterior abdominal wall in four places with a reusable stainless steel suture passer. To test whether the tube was watertight, we injected methylene blue solution into the tube. Results: All of the patients tolerated the procedure well. There were no operative deaths. Five LJTs were electively removed in the office. One patient was reoperated on 10 days postoperatively because of intractable pain, but the source of pain was not found and the LJT was intact. Conclusions: LJT may be placed safely using the described technique. No significant morbidity or mortality occurred in our series. The results of this study have prompted us to consider LJT for any patient requiring access to the jejunum for feeding.
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