Stoma leaking profusely

Hi everyone,

Our mom is dealing with oral cancer. She has been through chemo treatments and for the time being it seems to have shrunken the tumors.

The problem is her G-tube leaks profusely at the stoma. Last night I went to change the dressing and her Gatorade/Protein drink just came pouring out. I've spoken to my friend who's father has a G-tube and his father has not had this issue.

This is a new G-tube put in last week at Mass General. Will this problem go away or is this always going to happen? How can we stop it from leaking so much. Is it safe to use some kind of clamp on the tube to keep the bumper in her stomach flush against her stomach wall?

She's been a real trouper rolling with all these punches but I'm sure she's frustrated.

Report post

13 replies. Join the discussion

My son has had a G-button his entirer life, and we deal with leaking all the time. We have tried little rubber disks that fit between outside stomach and bottom of G-tube. Only problem with this is you will still have leakage causing a moister break down on skin. So we have stopped using those. I have alot of topical meds we use including any kind of paste to protect the skin and we use 2X2 I.V. sponges taped together to pull G-button tighter on the inside. My heart goes out to your mom, it's very frustating but hopefully with time the skin will heal and things will get better. Sincerely, MAC

Report post

My radiolologist prescribed Nystatin powder to keep the stoma dry and it works beautiful. You sprinkle a lot around the stoma, spread it around like powdering a baby's bottom, and it doesn't stop the leaks but it keeps them from hurting.

Report post

Thanks for your replys. She's going to the beach for 2 weeks so hopefully she'll be able to let the air and sun get at it. This site truly is a blessing. You are all angels.

Report post

Hi, Hleclair.
When I first had my G-tube placed surgically, about 3 days later while I was still in the hospital, it started leaking profusely. The hospital didn't fix it, sent me home. As it turned out, the tube had come almost all the way out and the formula was spilling out rather than going into my stomach. Because it was a fresh track, the track had begun closely up so that while I started with a 20 fr, they had to replace it with a 16 (very painful with no anesthesia. They should have given me a local.) On top of that I was dehydrated from all the loss.

Check right away to be sure the tube is in place and intact. Outpatient interventional radiology can do this.

Stay at it, best wishes. Let us know. Marie

Report post

Mine does this sometimes, you might want to try and infuse a little slower this might help. Sometimes a full stomach spills over. Or a loose fitting g-tube will leak gastric juices. Mine hasn't did it in a while. I do have some stoma adhesive powder on such days. You can get that form you home supply company.

Report post

What is stoma adhesive powder?


Report post

Sorry Genia, I have no idea what stoma adhesive powder is. I'm sure Marie could elaborate.

By the way, since my last entry, my mothers stoma has completely sealed. She doesn't even need dressing anymore. It sealed right-up. Amazing.

Thanks for all you support everyone!
Kind Regards,

Report post

Leaking may be due to the balloon needing more water.

To prevent irritation around the stoma, use 2x2 split gauze and change PRN. You may also want to apply a mixture of Maalox and Desitin. You can make up a few ounces of this "goop" to last the week.

Good luck.

Report post

i am nigel. i had a kimberley-clark gastrostomy feeding tube inserted first week of june this year. From july, there has been constant leak from my stoma so much so that the area around it is getting sore and the skin is tarting to break down. my wife who is my principal carer changes the gauze dressing everytime there is a leak. it does not leak when i am flat on my back but i find it difficult to lie flat all the time as the phlegm buids up profusely with the tracheaostomy and i need to sit up yo clear it. i have cancer of the nose and it has spread to my oral cavity and had obliterated the oral orifice and made even swallowing a drop of water impossible. i would be grateful for adice on how to overcome the leakage. my wife checks the balloon vol everytime and also the level of the tube insertion and both are at recommended levels. i now have a phobia feeding times because of the inevitable leak!!!

thank u guys

Report post

I just got a new g-tube too and am having the same problem. My GI doc has indicated that although some oozing is Ok stomach contents coming out is not. He has told me that it should seal up in 7 to 10 days and if not he may put in a larger tube.

I hope this helps and I sure hope that your mom is doing better.

Take care, Jen

Report post

I've had a MicKey tube for 3 years and I've had problems with leakage and stomach acid burns. I can eat or drink nothing by mouth. It's important that the right size of tube is used. They put the wrong size in 2 different times. I use Calmoseptine ointment around the stoma and put gauze around it which helps some, but I've not found a real good solution yet.

Report post

Hi!! My son has had a Mic-Key G-tube for 9 years. The only time it leaks is with the balloon inside his stomach becomes deflated and lets the hole leak. This can be caused by some drugs that eat away at the balloon and then the Gtube is no good. What TYPE of tube does mom have? does it sit tight against her tummy ordinarily? or does it have a long tube hanging out of it all the time? Those floppy types called PEGs or I think Mic-G cause many more problems than the Mic-Key because the long floppy tube hanging off outside the tummy gets flopped around and in the way and causes erosion to the stoma. We don't even need a dressing with the Mic-Key. They cost about $100 online to people like us, [I think Medicaid pays about $25 for them though]
and the PEGs are about half that-- probably why they use THEM. Anyway your leakage problem may be due to the inside little balloon leaking and not keeping the flap tight against moms stomach. Im not a doctor though so Im not sure

Report post

For leaking G-tube problems, try getting a Mic-Key tube instead of those sloppy types that have the long tube hanging out on the outside of the stomach. The Mic-Key sits almost flat against the tummy and heals up faster and stays healed up longer so you may not need all the messy dressings. USUALLY I find if my Mic-Key is leaking its because something has caused the little balloon inside the stomach that holds the button into place to become deflated. Some medicines do that such as some antibiotics taken by mouth or through the tube. My son had nothing but problems with other types of tubes [PEG and Mic-G types] for 9 years, and has had NO trouble for 9 years now on his Mic-Key [no need for dressings at all--- just have to replace it when the balloon fails and it starts to leak-- we can do this at home] Also the tip on feeding at a slower pace is a possibility-- Do you use a pump? These are great because you can adjust the rate, stop for a bit and resume if too much gets in too fast, etc. AND you don't have to monitor it so closely. Hope this helps.

Report post

This discussion is closed to replies. We close all discussions after 90 days.

If there's something you'd like to discuss, click below to start a new discussion.

Things you can do

Support the Oley Foundation

Help the Oley Foundation reach its goals and support people like yourself by making a donation today.

Donate to the Oley Foundation

Discussion topics

Helpful links from the Oley Foundation

Community leaders