Evaluation of bacterial contamination of a sterile, non-air-dependent enteral feeding system in immunocompromised patients

Mark Edmund Rupp, Rebecca A. Weseman, Nedra Marion, Peter Charles Iwen

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

8 Scopus citations


Background: Bacterial contamination of enteral feeding solutions has been associated with a variety of infectious complications. In order to minimize contamination of enteral feeding solutions, it is recommended that their infusion times be limited. This leads to wasted product and inefficient use of personnel time. The contamination rate for sterile, non-air-dependent, closed system enteral feeding solutions and the length of time over which they can be safely infused in immunocompromised patients is not known. Methods: Enteral feeding was administered to 15 liver transplant recipients via a sterile, closed, non-air-dependent system. At the conclusion of infusion of each bag of enteral feeding solution, the residual solution was quantitatively cultured. Subjects were also monitored for infectious complications. Results: The mean infusion time per 1.5-L bag of enteral feeding solution was 22.7 hours (range 10 hours to 35 hours). None of the 52 samples harbored bacteria. No subject developed a nosocomial infection that could be associated with contamination of the enteral feeding solution. Conclusions: When properly handled, sterile, non-air-dependent, closed system, enteral'feeding solutions can be administered over prolonged infusion times without bacterial contamination.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)135-137
Number of pages3
JournalNutrition in Clinical Practice
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - Jan 1 1999


ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine (miscellaneous)
  • Nutrition and Dietetics

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