TPN or Total Parenteral Nutrition is a revolutionary new way of giving nutrition to patients who cannot obtain it through regular food. This technique uses an intravenous drip to send vital nutrition into the patient’s bloodstream directly, without using the digestive system
TPN nutrition has saved thousands of lives this way. The treatment is vital in conditions like Short Bowel Syndrome, in which the patient is unable to get any nutrients from the food she eats. TPN gives the patients all the vital nutrients that they need including carbohydrates, minerals, vitamins, proteins, minerals and even fat in the form of lipids.
Unlike food however you just can’t get a quick bite and get going. A patient on TPN nutrition has to take the drip for many hours everyday, sometimes as long as 10 to 12 hours. That is why it is used only in conditions when there is no other way to receive nutrition.
In many cases the TPN patient can lead pretty normal life, specially if the treatment is only for a short duration. In that case the patient can still concentrate on normal issues, just like the youngster in the Vitamin C-Graduation, the famous song.
The flipside of TPN is the effect it has on vital digestion organs like the stomach, intestine, liver and kidneys. Prolonged use of TPN can cause major stress on these organs, even causing failure. That is why physicians supplement TPN with small quantities of food and drink if possible to keep the digestion organs healthy.
It is possible to administer TPN to yourself without a physician on hand and many patients have learned to do that, carrying on with their normal lives even as they fight with their disease…