Efficacy and Tolerance of Blended Diets in Children Receiving Gastrostomy Feeds

Irini D. Batsis, Laura Davis, Laura Prichett, Linxuan Wu, Darla Shores, Karla Au Yeung, Maria Oliva- Hemker

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

42 Scopus citations


Background: To determine the prevalence of gastrointestinal (GI) symptoms in children receiving a blended diet via a gastrostomy tube. Methods: This is a single-center, retrospective study of children ages 1–18 years that received a blended diet. We reviewed demographics, anthropometrics, clinical characteristics, and rationale for switching to blended diet. Fixed-effects logistic regression analysis was used to evaluate the changes in patient symptoms over the 12-month follow-up period, and fixed-effects regression was employed to test for changes in anthropometrics. Results: Twenty-three patients (8 female, 15 male) were identified, and data from 89 outpatient visits were analyzed. The most common underlying diagnosis was neurological disorder. Thirty-five percent of patients received commercial whole cow milk formulas, 30% received hydrolysate formulas, and 35% received amino acid−based formulas. After formula switches were made, 65% received homemade blended diets, 17.5% received commercial blended diets, and 17.5% received a combination of both. Median duration of time on a blended diet was 17 months. Ninety-five percent of patients who were previously experiencing upper GI symptoms improved within the first 3 months after blended diet initiation. Twenty-one percent of patients developed mild constipation on the diet, which was managed with increased water intake and/or polyethylene glycol. Only 2 patients discontinued the blended diet, because of inadequate weight gain and worsening of upper GI symptoms. Conclusions: In our study population, blended diets were well tolerated in gastrostomy-fed children and were associated with clinical improvement of upper GI symptoms.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)282-288
Number of pages7
JournalNutrition in Clinical Practice
Issue number2
StatePublished - 1 Apr 2020
Externally publishedYes


  • blended diet
  • blenderized diet
  • commercial formulas
  • emesis
  • gagging
  • gastrostomy feedings
  • reflux
  • retching


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