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Visitation restrictions are in effect at all Med Center Health hospitals and Cal Turner Rehab & Specialty Care.

See Med Center Health’s response to COVID-19 on our Coronavirus Update page.

First in Kentucky: Percutaneous Ultrasound Gastrostomy Procedures Performed at The Medical Center at Bowling Green

The first Percutaneous Ultrasound Gastrostomy (PUG) procedure in Kentucky was recently performed at The Medical Center at Bowling Green using ultrasound guidance with the PUMA-G device from CoapTech. PUG is a revolutionary new way to place gastrostomy tubes (G-tubes) in a patient who needs nutrition delivery directly into the stomach. PUG is a safer, simpler and faster bedside procedure for the minimally-invasive placement of a feeding tube.

In the past, a feeding tube would be placed using endoscopy in an operating room. “When you transport a critically ill patient, it can put the patient at risk,” said Karan Singh, M.D., pulmonologist with Western Kentucky Heart, Lung and Gastroenterology Associates. “Procedures are also best done by the team who knows the patient best. With this new technology, we can place the feeding tube a patient needs right at their bedside using ultrasound technology. This prevents a transfer between medical teams or a transfer from one location to another.”

The PUMA System technology combines magnetic attraction and ultrasound imaging in procedures. This combination creates visualization for real-time feedback to the clinician, which results in a safer and more effective procedure.

Millions of patients around the world utilize feeding tubes when unable to eat or swallow — including many cancer, diabetes, stroke, and ventilated patients. PUG helps reduce the risk of complications associated with other methods of percutaneous gastrostomy tube placement. In addition, PUG can be accomplished more quickly because it does not require a specialized operating suite, specialty consultant providers or invasive imaging — it employs readily available medical devices such as ultrasound, feeding tubes, guidewires and dilators.

The PUMA-G System was cleared for use by the FDA in 2019. Since then, it has been successfully and safely used for bedside gastrostomy in several different settings where ultrasound is available — in many types of ICUs, as well as step-down units, ‘floor’ units, IR suites, and Long-Term Acute Care hospitals. Compared to the total cost of PEG procedures, the PUMA-G System delivers around a 30-50% reduction in hospital costs and major savings from shorter lengths of stay for many patients.