ECMO In The Surgical Patient

  • Scott K. Alpard
  • Joseph B. Zwischenberger


ECMO is the term used to describe prolonged extracorporeal cardiopulmonary bypass achieved by extrathoracic vascular cannulation. A modified heart-lung machine is used, most often consisting of a distendible venous blood drainage reservoir, a servoregulated roller pump, a membrane lung to exchange oxygen and carbon dioxide, and a countercurrent heat exchanger to maintain normal body temperature. The patient must be continuously anticoagulated with heparin to prevent thrombosis within the circuit and potential formation of thromboemboli. Although most ECMO centers are experienced in the treatment of neonatal respiratory failure, institutional expertise and need dictate the availability of pediatric ECMO for respiratory or cardiac support, and adult ECMO for respiratory failure. Since 1989, participating ECMO centers have voluntarily registered all patients with the Neonatal, Pediatric, and Adult ECMO Registry of the Extracorporeal Life Support Organization (ELSO). Information concerning patient demographics, pre-ECMO clinical features, indications, medical and technical complications, and outcomes on ECMO have been collected and updated continuously as new patients receive ECMO support.


Congenital Diaphragmatic Hernia Extracorporeal Membrane Oxygenation Hypoplastic Left Heart Syndrome Congenital Diaphragmatic Hernia Extracorporeal Circuit 
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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2002

Authors and Affiliations

  • Scott K. Alpard
  • Joseph B. Zwischenberger

There are no affiliations available

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