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Extra Corporeal Membrane Oxygenation

Candidates for ECMO

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Candidates for ECMO

ECMO is necessary for children and adults with severe, reversible lung and/or heart disease which are not responding to the standards of treatment. These standard forms of treatment include: mechanical ventilation, increased oxygenation and medications. Patients with severe heart failure prior to or following heart surgery would be candidates for ECMO. Even though ECMO is not a treatment, it can provide the time needed to allow the heart and lungs to improve with rest.


ECMO is used to help babies with a wide variety of medical challenges, including:
  • Persistent Pulmonary Hypertension
  • Meconium Aspiration Syndrome
  • Sepsis or infection
  • Pneumonia
  • Congenital Diaphragmatic Hernia
  • Congenital Heart Disease / Post-op Shock Lung
  • Hyaline Membrane Disease.


ECMO is also used for older children suffering from the following conditions:

  • Post-op Cardiac Repair
  • Myocarditis
  • Sepsis
  • Pneumonia
  • Aspiration Pneumonia
  • Asthma
  • Near Drowning
  • Hydrocarbon Ingestion (lighter fluid, turpentine)


In adults, ECMO may be indicated for:

  • Underlying disease with reasonable likelihood of reversal
  • Septic Shock
  • Pneumonia
  • Pulmonary Failure

Additional Pediatric Critical Care Medicine Resources
Miami Pediatric Intensive Care Unit (PICU)
Extracorporeal Life Support Program
- What is ECMO?
- History of ECMO
- Candidates for ECMO
- Physiology
- Weaning
- ECMO Complications
- Apheresis
LifeFlight
Rapid Response Team
Meet the PCCM Team