The nurse is caring for a client with a small-bowel obstruction. A Salem sump nasogastric tube (NGT) is in place. Which finding by the nurse requires corrective action? Select all that apply.

  • There is a sudden decrease in output.
  • The NGT is set to low continuous suction.
  • The NGT is set to medium intermittent suction.
  • The patient is positioned in the semi-Fowler’s position.
  • The client dislodges the tube and the nurse replaces it, confirming placement by X-ray before use.
Numbers 1 and 3 are correct.
A sudden decrease in output may indicate blockage. A Salem sump tube is attached to low continuous suction. Medium intermittent suction is not appropriate for this tube. The semi-Fowler’s position is most appropriate for the client with an NGT. If the NGT needs to be repositioned or replaced, confirmation of proper placement is needed before use.