Children

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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 do so.
  • 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.
  • Keep medicines with you when you travel. Do not store them in the trunk of the car or in a suitcase on a plane.
  • 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 do so.

Giving medicine when your child has a tube

  • It is easier to give medicine through the tube in a liquid form.
  • If your child’s medicine comes as a pill and can be crushed, crush it into fine powder and mix with water or baby food that is thinned with 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 if it can be given with the feeding.

Giving medicine through a tube with a medicine port

If your child has a medicine port, it will be the smaller opening in the tube than the one used for feedings.
Follow these steps:

  1. Wash your hands.
  2. Get all the supplies you will need: 
    • Syringes
    • Medicines (have them drawn up in syringes, ready to go)
    • Water (for flushing, either in a cup or a syringe)
    • Extension set (for children who have a button type of tube)
  3. Make sure the feeding port (the larger opening) is closed when using the medicine port.
  4. If your child has a button type of tube, attach the extension set.
    • You may need to pause feeding if your child is in the middle of a feeding.
  5. Clamp the tube.
  6. Open the medicine port and insert the medicine syringe into the port.
  7. Unclamp the tube, and push the medicine into the tube with the syringe.
  8. Clamp the tube. This will help the medicine from coming back out.
  9. Remove the syringe from the medicine port.
  10. Draw up 5-10 mL of water into a syringe, unless told otherwise by your nurse or doctor.
  11. Attach the syringe of water to the medicine port.
  12. Unclamp the tube and push the water through the tube.
  13. Once all the medicine is given and the water flush is complete, clamp the tube and close the medicine port. Don’t forget to remove the extension set if your child has a button type of tube.

Giving medicine through a tube without a medicine port

Follow these steps:

  1. Wash your hands.
  2. Get all the supplies you will need:
    • Syringes
    • Medicines (have them drawn up in syringes, ready to go)
    • Water (for flushing, either in a cup or a syringe)
    • Extension set (for children who have a button type of tube)
  3. Clamp the tube.
  4. Attach a larger empty syringe without a plunger into the tubing.
  5. Pour the exact dose of medicine into the syringe.
  6. Unclamp the tube and let the medicine flow into the tubing naturally.
  7. Sometimes, the medicine may not move through the tube. You can either:
    • “Milk” the tube by gently squeezing, or
    • Using the plunger from the syringe, give a slight push into the tube.
  8. Once the medicine is emptied from the syringe, you can pour 5-10 mL of water into the syringe. Your nurse or doctor will instruct you on how much water to pour.
  9. You may also need to help the water flow through the tube. Please refer to step #7 for troubleshooting.
  10. Once all the medicine is given and the water flush is complete, clamp the tube.

Video: Giving medicine through a G-tube or J-tube



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