Malnourished patients

What Is It All About?

In reality there are two distinct types of treatment:

a) Parenteral Nutrition (HPN). Has been used since the 70's and is the best known. It consists of introducing an intravenous catheter into a vein in the neck which is connected to special nutritional bags that go directly into a vein bypassing the digestive system. There is a danger of serious complications, including septicaemia.

b) Enteral Nutrition (HEN). This is the newest and least known. It consists of introducing a thin tube into the nose or directly into the stomach through a opening in the stomach created using an endoscope (PEG). This is the ideal solution, but it is sometimes impossible to adopt because for the nutrients to be introduced to the digestive system. It is necessary for this process to be at least partially functioning. Unlike the HPN, HEN poses no risk and should be the preferred treatment. Out of 469 patients currently receiving treatment only 8 are in HPN precisely because the digestive system is completely dysfunctional.