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D-Dimer Monitoring for ECMO Coagulopathy Management…One More Piece of the Puzzle?

Could D-dimer monitoring for ECMO coagulation management be a critical piece of the puzzle? The ability to keep a circuit from clotting off  while at the same time not allowing the patient to bleed to death has been a battle in the extracorporeal world for many years.  In an  I listed my top 5 lab […]

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ECMO and Consent: The Importance of Communication

Consent and Disclosure in Pediatric Heart Surgery The trust that families give healthcare workers is immense. To break that trust by lack of communication is heart breaking. The healthcare community should read this story, perhaps this entire book. We are given a great charge to take care of our patients, and by extension, their families. […]

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Moving ECMO from “Last Ditch Effort” to ECMO as Mode of Support to Improve Quality of Life

As with almost everything in healthcare, weighing the benefits of a therapy or support vs. the adverse effects of that therapy or support can result in widely variable opinions.  I think most involved in ECMO support would agree that historically, many institutions too often use ECMO as a “last ditch effort”.  Often we hear doctors […]

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Annual Competency Checks for ECMO/ECLS Teams

Spring time – such a lovely time of the year! The cherry trees are blooming, the daffodils are so pretty. It’s time to dust off the winter blahs, think about renewal and growth… Oh – and it’s time to think about the calendar! When are we going to do our annual competencies? Yikes!Annual competencies are […]

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Liquid Fluorocarbon Lavage

A recent report from the group in Pittsburg, PA highlights the use of a liquid fluorocarbon lavage known as PFD (OriGen Biomedical, Inc, Austin, TX, USA) on compassionate use basis. We recently shared another report using the same product from the group in Seattle, WA back in February 2015. This looks like a promising tool […]

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ECMO Outcomes

Are ECMO outcomes dependent on the number of ECMO patients supported at your institution?  Does it really matter how many ECMO patients your program supports?  Do patients suffer by being on ECMO at smaller ECMO programs? There have been a couple of publications recently suggesting that it does matter. The most recent abstract I came […]

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New Extracorporeal Technologies

There are a lot of projects ongoing in the world of extracorporeal support with new extracorporeal technologies being worked on all the time.  In this post I want to highlight one that is not a life support system, but it could prove to be very beneficial especially to patients who are on extracorporeal life support systems […]

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Vital Updates: The ECLS Conference

  I’m in Keystone Colorado – attending the 31st Annual CHNS Symposium on “ECMO and the Advanced Therapies for Respiratory Failure Conference”. While the conference has many competing distractions (skiing anyone?) the chance to hear the latest information that leading ECLS Centers and experts are presenting here is too vital to miss. Very often I […]

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The Cost of ECMO…Is It Worth It?

Over the years as I have consulted for ECMO programs and talked with Administrators, Physicians, etc. as well as ECMO Specialists, a common question has been: “What does it cost to run an ECMO program?”.  Or, “What does it cost to provide ECMO support?”  What is the cost of ECMO support?  And although it’s often unstated, the underlying […]

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