Survival after insertion of a Feeding tube


Survival following the placement of gastrostomy tube in patients with multiple sclerosis. Grandidge L, Chotiyarnwong C, White S, Denning J, Nair KPS. Mult Scler J Exp Transl Clin. 2020 Jan 14;6(1):2055217319900907

BACKGROUND:Around a third of people with multiple sclerosis (MS) experience dysphagia (Difficulty with swallowing). There is a need for disease-specific information on survival following placement of gastrostomy tube in people with MS.

OBJECTIVE: We aimed to study survival following gastrostomy in patients with MS.

METHODS: We reviewed medical records, home enteral feeding database and death certificates of people with MS who had gastrostomy from 2005 to 2017. Cox regression analysis was performed to identify independent predictors associated with mortality after gastrostomy.

RESULTS: Median survival of 53 patients with MS after gastrostomy was 21.73 months. Median duration of hospital stay after gastrostomy was 14 days (IQR 5.25, 51.5). Survival at 30 days, 3 months, 1, 2, 5 and 10 years were 100% (53/53), 98.1% (52/53), 81.1% (43/53), 54.7% (29/53), 22.4% (11/49) and 6.8% (3/44), respectively. Of 53 patients, 24 died due to respiratory tract infection. Patients who had gastrostomy tube before 50 years of age survived longer (median 28.48 months) compared with those who had the gastrostomy after age 50 years (median 17.51 months) (p = 0.040).

CONCLUSION:Around 54% of patients with MS survived two or more years following gastrostomy. Younger patients had better survival. The most frequent cause of death was respiratory infection.

gastrostomy tube (also called a Gtube) is a tube inserted through the belly that brings nutrition directly to the stomach. It’s one of the ways doctors can make sure kids who have trouble eating get the fluid and calories they need.

About the author



  • You know how to cheer us MSers up! After Prof G’s post on young carers another reminder of what the future holds. Thank god for Dignitas.

    Any chance of a positive news story in the near future? Perhaps a re-myelination study with positive results, or an anti-ebv therapy that show real promise?

      • Can’t remember when you lasted posted a positive research paper. When I was at school the fat kid in the class was always selected as the goalkeeper (he wasn’t much use for anything else). I wonder if this is similar to when neuros are selected for their specialism or when medical researchers are selected to research neurological diseases? Either MS is too complex or the wrong people are assigned to cover it / research it. But in 2020 we should not be in a position where relatively young patients are having a hose pipe pushed through their midriff and almost half of them die. To avoid these barbaric situations we need a therapy to shut down the processes leading to neuro-degeneration / brain atrophy. What the hell have researchers been doing for the last 60 years?

        • I guess that is what you are saying, today I am useless and fat…but please do not blame it on the researchers… is not them that makes the “you know what” amongst the best selling MS drugs in the World. Sadly many of you play along with the Neuros game to make this so.

          How many places are happy to see MS smolder away and not get on top of things ASAP. Read and apply

          Today is positive as are the rest of my posts this week, but only if you read it that way….but if the MS world creates a Grumpy and publishes the grumpy, you get the grumpy. Yes we could report the MS cure of the week, but this often animal work is years from the clinic, just like anyother site, but MS is a bad condition. You have difficult choices to make.

          You can get the science dressed up on many other sites where all science is amazing. There is never a bad word. If this is what you want to believe then great, but why is progress so slow?

          We are all frustrated, but why take it out on the messenger?

  • I am very gratfull for all the nice work you do for us on daily basis on this web blog. But I must confes that my impression is that in the last period, maybe fwe weeks, months the news, articles you present are more and more depressing, sad.

    • Prof G is the glass half full person but he and NDG have left me to fill the space and there is not so much “It’s all amazing and we are all made out of stardust” out there. I will try and be a bit more chipper:-). In addition some posts I am doing are taking quite abit of time to write an am in the middle of as 7 parter for the week.

  • Thank you for this interesting post I much prefer this approach than the sanitised version of things we get elsewhere.
    We are also amazing and made of stardust though 😉

  • Oh my
    So let’s look at the bright side. If one ever gets bad enough dysphagia, a feeding tube will be a blessing. It should give us time enough to declutter the house, tidy the drawers, and put everything in order

  • Thank you for posting this paper, MouseDoctor.

    Swallowing problems become a serious issue in more advanced MS, but there’s been very little published on the risks and benefits of having a PEG tube for people with MS.

    Anyone who is facing the often difficult decision to give consent for treatment with PEG (often on behalf of a loved one) will really appreciate the extra data reported in this paper.

By MouseDoctor



Recent Posts

Recent Comments