'YourTube' the role of different diets in gastrostomy-fed children: Baseline findings from a prospective cohort study

Lorna K Fraser*, Andre Bedendo, Mark O'neill, Johanna Taylor, Julia Hackett, Karen Horridge, Janet Cade, Gerry Richardson, Han Phung, Alison Mccarter, Catherine Hewitt

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


AIM: To assess the risks, benefits, and resource implications of home-blended food for children with gastrostomy tubes compared with a formula diet.

METHOD: This prospective cohort study of children (aged 0-18 years) collected baseline data on gastrointestinal symptoms, nutritional intake, anthropometric outcomes, parent and child quality of life, and resource use. A propensity score-weighted generalized linear mixed model was used to compare children receiving a home-blended versus formula diet.

RESULTS: Baseline data were obtained for 180 children (2019-2021; 107 males, 73 females; mean age 9 years 7 months [SD  4 years 5 months]). Children receiving a home-blended diet (n  = 104) had similar diagnoses and age but more lived in areas of lower deprivation and parental education was higher compared to the parents of children receiving a formula diet (n  = 76). Children receiving home-blended diets had significantly better gastrointestinal scores than those receiving formula diets (B  = 13.8, p  < 0.001). The number of gut infections and tube blockages were similar between the two groups but with fewer stoma site infections in the group receiving home-blended food. Children receiving a home-blended diet had more fibre in their diet compared to children receiving a formula diet.

INTERPRETATION: Home-blended diets should be seen as a safe option for children who are gastrostomy-fed unless clinically contraindicated. Equality of access to home-blended diets for children with gastrostomy should be assessed by local clinical teams.

Original languageEnglish
Number of pages10
JournalDevelopmental medicine and child neurology
Early online date10 Nov 2023
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 10 Nov 2023

Bibliographical note

© 2023 The Authors. Developmental Medicine & Child Neurology published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd on behalf of Mac Keith Press.

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