Ian’s G tube did a special disappearing act at the end of the week. We vented his belly right before we fed him his afternoon meal. *Venting* consists of opening the G tube feeding port and inserting a syringe, or extension with a syringe, and allowing air to escape from inside. Fluid will escape at times, but can easily be pushed back into the belly. We like to call this “burping” his belly. Ian seems to always need venting. We vent him when he wakes up, before every meal, and before bedtime...... sometimes more. Ian is able to burp now, but this allows a lot more air to escape a lot easier.
FYI: I have noticed that the BD syringes will fit directly into the button port IF they are the sterile ones in the packaging. The ones saying “oral use only” on them have larger barrels on the syringes and will NOT fit into the port.
We like to use 10 or 20mL BD syringes that fit directly into the port and do not need an extension. However, an extension and a 60mL syringe works very nicely also.
Venting with a 10mL sterile BD syringe
Anyway....... after venting him, we fed him. Immediately after his meal, he pooped..... go figure! Tom took him right upstairs to change his diaper. He lifted his shirt to change him and noticed the button was GONE. He called me in the basement of the RMcD House in a panic. He simply said it was gone.
Upstairs, I asked him where the button was, thinking maybe he had it..... but he said he didn’t know. We knew it was there right before he ate, since we had vented him prior to eating. The stoma was not leaking and there was no bleeding, swelling, tearing, redness, or oozing. Ian didn’t even seem to notice it was gone.
We always carry at least one back-up button. I cleaned his site, pulled out the button and prepared the lubricant to insert the new button. As I turned to do so, I saw his old button lying on the floor, with the IV gauze still wrapped around it. The balloon, still inflated!!
Once I placed the new button, Ian was back to whatever it was he was doing before the whole event started. I grabbed the old button from the floor to check the balloon for leaks. I didn’t see anything when I inserted more water into the balloon. Sometimes they have a slow leak over time. Also, the buttons become very lopsided as they are in the body. The shape of the stomach changes the way the balloon is shaped.