We all know that we take food which is converted in to the useful body chemicals by the digestive juices. First we use mouth to eat food properly and afterwards the gut part of our body works on the eaten food. If due to any medical reasons it is not possible to give food using mouth, food is delivered via tube in to body. But if gut part of the body is not functioning, then what is the solution? The parenteral nutrition is the solution to this problem The parenteral nutrition means feeding a person intravenously. Here both eating and digesting steps are completely avoided. The parenteral nutrition means bypassing usual digestion process totally.
Which types of persons will be requiring the parenteral nutrition? If there is any damage to the digestive system or if digestive system is not working properly, you are forced to try the parenteral nutrition process. After surgery many times patients are not in a position of using their digestive system, so they will be using the parenteral nutrition method. Some patients have chronic digestive problems; they will require the parenteral nutrition method. Some people go in to the coma; these types of patients also require the parenteral nutrition method.
Short term use and long term use of the parenteral nutrition method are used depending upon the situation. In case of surgeries, long term use is recommended. This method has saved lives of many small children having, deformed guts. But it is always controversial decision to use the parenteral nutrition method. The reason is, there are lots of side effects or complications may arise during the use of the parenteral nutrition method.
All the nutrients required by the body are fed through the veins. There are macronutrients such as carbohydrates; proteins etc. there are micronutrients such as vitamins and minerals. Both types of nutrients are required by the body and have to be supplied in the parenteral nutrition method. If excess of nutrients are provided to the body, they do create lots of complications. If less nutrition is provided, problems due to malnutrition occur.
Thus maintaining required balance of nutrients poses medical challenge. So it is necessary to monitor nutrient levels in patient continuously.
The procedure of intravenous supply of nutrients is not easy. Battery operated infusion pumps have to be used. Generally after every few hours next nutrition feed has to be given. The choice of the vain through which the nutrient feed is to be given is complicated decision to be handled by doctors using the parenteral nutrition method.
The most commonly occurring complication is of course bacterial infection. There is catheter in main artery all the time increasing the bacterial infection many times.
Sometimes liver failure can be a complication in the parenteral nutrition method.
This can occur, because food directly inside the veins is difficult for the liver to act upon.
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