UBC Theses and Dissertations
The effect of the patient’s level of consciousness and the degree of nasogastric tube flexibility on the ease of insertion of the tube in patients with an endotracheal tube in place Heaslip, Jane Elizabeth
The purpose of this study was to examine the effect that the patient's level of consciousness and the degree of nasogastric tube flexibility would have on the ease of insertion of the tube in patients with an endotracheal tube in place. The statistical hypotheses tested were: 1. The Degree of nasogastric tube flexibility will not influence the ease with which the tube is inserted. 2. The level of consciousness of the patient will not influence the ease with which the nasogastric tube is inserted. 3. There will be no interaction between the degree of flexibility of the nasogastric tube to be inserted and the level of consciousness of the patient in whom the tube is placed. The sample from whom data was collected for the study consisted of 121 patients admitted to the respiratory intensive care unit of a large teaching hospital who required endotrachea intubation and subsequent placement of a nasogastric tube. The number of attempts per patient for successful placement of each tube were recorded over a four month period and the data analysed using a 2 X 3 factorial design. The two independent variables were degree of nasogastric tube flexibility with two levels: flexible and rigid, and level of consciousness with three levels: conscious, obtunded and unconscious. The data collected from the study indicate that the degree of nasogastric tube flexibility significantly affects the ease with which a tube can be inserted in an intubated patient (α=.05) the rigid tube requiring a statistically fewer number of attempts than the flexible tube. The difference among levels of patient consciousness were not found to be statistically significant in this investigation but the interaction between the degree of tube flexibility and level of patient consciousness revealed statistical significance.
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