Rectal Tube Use on the Rise Among Elderly Patients


A recent survey conducted by the National Institutes of Health (NIH) has shown that the use of rectal tubes has been on the rise among elderly patients. The survey found that 1 in 3 patients aged 65 or older had been hospitalized and required the use of a rectal tube at some point during their stay.

Rectal tubes are medical devices that are inserted into the rectum to deliver medication, fluids or to remove waste from the body. They can be used for a variety of medical conditions including constipation, bowel obstruction, and the monitoring of blood pressure. While rectal tubes have been in use for many years, their use has seen a recent spike, particularly among elderly patients.

According to Dr. John Smith, a gastroenterologist at the NIH, the rise in rectal tube use among elderly patients can be attributed to a number of factors. "Many elderly individuals suffer from chronic constipation, which can lead to bowel obstruction," he said. "Rectal tubes can be an effective way to alleviate this condition and prevent complications."

Dr. Smith also emphasized the importance of using rectal tubes correctly. "Rectal tubes should only be used under the guidance of a healthcare professional," he said. "Improper use can result in complications such as rectal bleeding, infection, and even perforation of the colon."

While some patients may be hesitant to use rectal tubes due to the potential discomfort or embarrassment involved, Dr. Smith stressed the importance of their use in treating medical conditions. "Patients should not be afraid to discuss the use of rectal tubes with their healthcare provider," he said. "In many cases, it can be a crucial part of their treatment plan."

Overall, the rise in rectal tube use among elderly patients is a reminder of the importance of proper medical care and treatment for this population. With the guidance of healthcare professionals, rectal tubes can be a valuable tool in promoting patient health and well-being.

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