Home Parenteral Nutrition Programs

Philip J. Schneider, Jay M. Mirtallo

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations


The technique of home parenteral nutrition (HPN) is becoming a more widely used method to treat patients who cannot eat for prolonged periods; to date, more than 500 patients have been trained nationwide. Training has been limited for the most part to larger centers which have more experience in providing this complex patient education. As this technique becomes more widely accepted, however, other less experienced health care professionals will be called upon to develop HPN training programs. For this reason, it is important to simplify these training programs, with initial attention directed toward the procedures used to prepare the total parenteral nutrition solution. The chance of potential errors can be reduced by using amino acid solutions with electrolytes included in the formulation. When possible, complexity can be reduced by administering vitamins and extra electrolytes orally. The teaching program can be simplified by developing or using existing training manuals, which standardize procedures so that consistent methods are taught and performed. The manual can serve as a reference for patient and teacher alike. Distribution of supplies can be simplified by employing commercially available shipment programs; but, while these are very convenient for the patient and pharmacy, the costs of such programs could be a limitation. Finally, the extensive work required to arrange reimbursement for services and supplies also can be simplified. Often a social worker can facilitate this process because of experience and training in dealing with payment problems. In addition, training fees should be negotiated with third party payors early in the development of HPN programs. By simplifying these basic elements in an HPN, the task of training patients is less imposing and can be made more widely available to those who need this treatment modality.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)157-160
Number of pages4
JournalJournal of Parenteral and Enteral Nutrition
Issue number2
StatePublished - Mar 1981

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine (miscellaneous)
  • Nutrition and Dietetics


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