Chapter 4: Medicines

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Important medicine information

  • Know the names of the medicines your child is taking.
  • Make sure to give all medicines as directed. Do not skip, change or give extra doses unless the doctor or nurse tells you to.
  • Keep all medicines in their original container. The label shows the medicine name, dose and expiration date. It also helps keep the medicine fresh.
  • Keep medicines where children cannot get at them. If a child accidentally swallows the medicine, call the Poison Control Center right away at 800-222-1222.
  • Bring medicines, or a list of your child's medicines and dosages, to each clinic visit.
  • Keep medicine in a dry place, away from heat or direct light. Store medicines at room temperature unless you are told to refrigerate them.
  • Carry medicines with you when you travel. Do not store them in your luggage.
  • If your child has any side effects from a medicine, call your doctor or nurse.
  • If your child misses a dose or throws up a dose, call your doctor or nurse. Do not skip or give an extra dose unless the doctor or nurse tells you to.

Giving medicine

A syringe to be used for giving medicine but usually is not covered by insuranceIt is best to give liquid medicine through the tube. If your child's medicine comes as a pill, ask your child's doctor or pharmacist if it can be crushed. Some medicines cannot be crushed.Crushing medicine for easier digestion but not all medicine can be crushed If allowed, crush it into fine powder and mix with tap water.

Check with your child's doctor, nurse or pharmacist to see if the medicine your child takes should be given before the feeding or with the feeding.

Syringes are usually not covered by insurance. It is best to reuse medicine syringes as long as they are being rinsed in between use and you can still read the markings.

How to give medicine through a tube

Some tubes have a medicine port. One port can be used to give medicine while the other is used to give feedings.

If your child has a GJ-tube or J-tube, ask your child's doctor if the medicine should be given into the G-port or the J-port.

You can push medicine through the tube by putting the medicine syringe into the port of tube or extension set.

Your can also give medicine into a large syringe attached to the tube and let it go down through the tube by gravity.


StepsChildren's G-tube Notebook provides the proper steps on administering medicine

  1. Get your supplies.
    – Syringes
    – Extension set if needed
    – Medicines (have them drawn up and ready to go)
    – 2 to 5 mL of water for flushing, before and after each medicine
  2. Wash your hands.
  3. Clamp the tube.
  4. Insert the syringe of water into the port.
  5. Unclamp the tube.
  6. Flush the tube with water.
  7. Clamp the tube.
  8. Insert the syringe with the medicine into the port.
  9. Unclamp the tube.
  10. Push the medicine into the tube.
  11. Clamp the tube. This will help the medicine from coming back out.
  12. Insert the syringe of water into the port. This makes sure all the medicine is out of the tube and into your child.
  13. Clamp the tube.
  14. Remove the syringe from the port.
  15. Close the cover on the port and remove any extension sets.

Key points

  • Medicine can be given in different ways. Liquid medicine is easier to get through the tube.
  • Ask your child's nurse, doctor or pharmacist how to give the medicine.
  • Give your child the full dose.
    – Clamp the tubing in between each step so that the medicine does not come back out.
    – Contact your child's doctor or nurse if your child does not get their full dose.