The doctor’s consultation on the PEG – a negative experience

Sometimes you already suspect it (and may even have successfully suppressed it until now). When the doctors treating you tell you that a PEG feeding tube is really necessary, it is still often a shock. Even if a PEG is a really good therapeutic tool, a permanent feeding tube is usually nothing to look forward to. On the contrary. People are often even afraid of it. Read this article to find out why these fears are largely unfounded.

A real incision

This makes it all the more important for medical staff to be particularly sensitive in their dealings with patients at this time. This is sometimes more and sometimes less successful. It certainly also depends on who delivers the news and how empathetic they are. It is often forgotten that a PEG is a real turning point in the life of the person concerned. For us, dealing with a feeding tube is not (yet) part of everyday life. In contrast to the doctors. I had to experience for myself how differently doctors can proceed.

Now was the time

I have already described in another post how it came about that I had to be fitted with a PEG feeding tube. The subject had been brought up time and again. At some point, the doctors decided that now was the time to tell me that I would need a PEG. Suddenly, two doctors stood in my hospital room and told me that I would probably be better off with a feeding tube. Out of the blue. Of course, I was caught off guard at that moment. Nevertheless, I plucked up all my courage and asked how it would work. One of the doctors simply said to me: “We’ll make a hole in your stomach and put a tube through it.” Unfortunately, he wasn’t joking. That’s exactly how he explained it to me. The fact that I still remember it today, some 20 years later, as if it were yesterday, shows how much this statement traumatized me at the time. (Anyone who, like me at the time, would like a better explanation of what happened should definitely read this article here).

I blocked it out completely

Even without a degree in medicine, I had been able to deduce for myself that a tube and a hole would probably play a role in this procedure. After this unqualified statement and the fact that I didn’t feel taken seriously at all, I completely blocked it. I didn’t want to know anything more about the topic of feeding tubes. Instead, I tried desperately (and unsuccessfully) to eat more orally. In view of the fact that I kept aspirating, this was not exactly conducive to my well-being.

A positive example

A few weeks later, I spent some time in a rehabilitation clinic. The treatment team there also realized very quickly that a feeding tube would certainly be indicated for me. However, they chose a different approach here. From my perspective, a much more empathetic approach. In the next blog post, I will tell you exactly how I was persuaded that a PEG would be good for me.