Long Intestinal Tubes
The Long Intestinal Tubes, Miller-Abbott, Cantor Tube and Andersen Tube, are examples of tubes with weight at their end that are placed preoperatively or intraoperatively for gastrointestinal surgeries. The long length makes it possible to remove the intestinal contents for the treatment of an obstruction, which is not possible by means of a nasogastric tube.
These tubes can decompress the small intestine and separate it intraoperatively or postoperatively. As the progression of the tubes depends on intestinal peristalsis, its use is contraindicated in patients with paralytic ileus and severe intestinal mechanical obstructions.
Older appliances, such as Cantor and Miller-Abbott-type tubes, are rarely used today because the balloon at the distal end is filled with mercury, and the new Andersen probe has a tip filled with tungsten, which is the safest option.
Interventions used in patient care with a long intestinal tubes are similar to those used for the nasogastric tube and sengstaken blakemore: Balloon hyperinflation should be observed in the patient, which makes removal more difficult, rupture of the balloon that can lead to intestinal rupture, and reverse invagination if the probe is removed quickly. The intestinal probes should be removed slowly, usually around 2 inches of catheter should be removed every hour.