Use of extracorporeal membrane oxygenation (ECMO) has been exponentially increasing over the last decade and is now considered a mainstream lifesaving treatment modality in critical care medicine. However, the need for physician education, training, and experience remains imperative. Although ECMO has traditionally been used in end-stage lung disease and circulatory collapse, it is being adopted for use in right heart failure, as a bridge to heart and lung transplantation, and as rescue therapy for both sepsis and post-organ transplantation. The following article discusses indications, management, complications, and challenges of ECMO as well as our experience at the Houston Methodist DeBakey Heart & Vascular Center.
- acute respiratory distress syndrome
- cardiogenic shock
- extracorporeal membrane oxygenation
- heart transplant
- lung transplant
- right heart failure
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