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Randomised controlled trial
Inconclusive evidence regarding the volume of gastric aspirate that can be safely reintroduced following residual volume measurements
  1. Norma A Metheny
  1. Correspondence to Norma A Metheny
    Saint Louis University School of Nursing, 3525 Caroline Mall, St Louis, MO 63104, USA; methenna{at}slu.edu

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This randomised trial to assess risks associated with returning or discarding gastric residual volume (GRV) to tube-fed patients is similar to one reported in 2000 by Booker and colleagues. Although the current study had a larger sample size, neither study was able to provide definitive recommendations for practice.

The investigators randomised 125 critically ill adult patients to a ‘return’ or ‘discard’ group. The return group had up to 250 ml of gastric fluid returned to the stomach at each 6-hourly GRV measurement. Although not explicitly stated by the investigators, it appears that no gastric fluid was …

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