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Everything about gastric lavage + Frequently Asked Questions

Study guide

Gastric lavage is a method of disinfecting the gastrointestinal tract that a doctor can use when necessary to quickly empty the contents of the stomach. Gastric lavage is also known as gastric lavage or nasopharyngeal intubation (gastric lavage). In this article, we will explain in detail about gastric lavage and everything you need to know about it. At the end of the article, we will answer the common questions in this field.

When is gastric lavage used?

If you swallow the toxin or take too many pills, your doctor may order a gastric lavage. If you swallow something toxic like household chemicals, go to the hospital as soon as possible. If less than four hours have passed since the consumption of the toxin, gastric lavage is most effective.

Your doctor may also order gastric lavage after certain abdominal surgeries, such as gastrectomy.
In addition to the above, your doctor may use treatment for the following:

  • Stomach acid sampling;
  • Reduce pressure on the intestines if they are blocked;
  • Suction of blood out in case of gastric bleeding;
  • Gastric lavage in case of blood vomiting during upper gastrointestinal (GI) endoscopy;
  • To perform safe surgery and limit the risk of aspiration pneumonia;
  • To reduce stomach pressure during auxiliary ventilation in the hospital.

How to prepare for gastric lavage?

If you are going to have a gastric lavage due to food or chemical poisoning, overdose or other emergencies, you will not have time to prepare in advance. But if your doctor wants to use this method to take a sample of your stomach acid for a test, he or she may ask you to fast before doing so or to refrain from taking certain medications.

How is gastric lavage done?

Before doing this, your doctor may give you a medicine to numb your throat. This will reduce the tightness and irritation of the throat. It then inserts a tube into your mouth or nose and passes it through your esophagus into your stomach. The esophagus is the duct that connects your mouth to your stomach.

Your doctor may spray water or saline solution into your tube before rinsing your stomach. Saline solution against your electrolyte imbalance protects This can happen when fluid is expelled from your stomach. Then the gastric lavage process begins and the fluid inside the stomach is expelled.

What are the dangers of gastric lavage?

This process can be annoying. You may feel nauseous when inserting the tube. After that, your throat may become irritated.

This method can have more serious risks. One of the most common is aspiration pneumonia. This happens when some of the contents of the stomach enter the lungs or airways. Untreated aspiration pneumonia can potentially cause swollen lungs, lung abscesses, or bacterial pneumonia.

Symptoms of aspiration pneumonia include:

  • Chest pain;
  • Chest tightness;
  • Cough with sputum;
  • Bluish skin color;
  • Fatigue;
  • Fever.

This hazard occurs if the pipe is out of place. Gastric lavage by emptying the stomach before the contents enter the respiratory tract protects you from aspiration pneumonia.

Other risks of gastric lavage include:

  • Spasm of the vocal cords that temporarily prevents normal breathing;
  • Insertion of a tube into the airway instead of the esophagus;
  • Making a hole in the esophagus with a tube;
  • Pouring the contents of the stomach into the intestines;
  • Gastrointestinal damage;
  • Minor bleeding;
  • Hypoxia or lack of oxygen;
  • Hypothermia or frostbite.

In general, gastric lavage should be done infrequently. The amount of toxin removed by gastric lavage is often small, especially if done after the first hour. There are few situations where the benefits outweigh the risks. This should only be prescribed by a doctor. If you have any concerns about this procedure, talk to your doctor. Your doctor will help you better understand the potential benefits and risks.

Frequently Asked Questions about gastric lavage

Under what circumstances should gastric lavage not be performed?

  • Poisoning in young children;
  • Unprotected airway in which the level of consciousness is reduced or there is a risk;
  • Poisoning by ingestion of caustic substances;
  • Hydrocarbon ingestion.

What is the most important thing to do to wash your stomach?

If you or those around you are poisoned, get to the hospital as soon as possible.

Does gastric lavage hurt?

The amount of pain varies from patient to patient. But usually a person has more nausea than pain.

– What to eat after gastric lavage?

Avoid fatty foods after gastric lavage. Try to eat foods that are quick to digest and low in fat. Consumption of water and drinks containing electrolytes is also very useful.

Concluding remarks

Read this article to know everything you need to know about gastric lavage. See a hospital as soon as possible if you have been poisoned by chemicals or certain medications. Visiting in the early hours after poisoning plays a decisive role in the rate at which toxins are expelled from your stomach.

Have you ever experienced gastric lavage? If you have a comment or question about this, let us know in the comments section.

Warning! This article is for educational purposes only and you should consult your doctor or specialist to use it. more information





Everything about gastric lavage + Frequently Asked Questions

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