Extracorporeal membrane oxygenation in postcardiotomy patients: Factors influencing outcome

T. K.Susheel Kumar, David Zurakowski, Heidi Dalton, Sachin Talwar, Ayana Allard-Picou, Lennart F. Duebener, Pranava Sinha, Achintya Moulick

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

152 Scopus citations


Objective: Our objective was to assess the morbidity and mortality in children requiring extracorporeal membrane oxygenator support after cardiac surgery and to determine factors influencing outcome. Methods: Between January 2003 and June 2008, 58 patients required extracorporeal membrane oxygenator support after cardiac surgery. A retrospective study was performed and factors influencing outcome were determined by logistic regression modeling with the probability of outcome based on a combination of multivariate predictors. Results: Median age and weight were 12 days and 3.3 kg, respectively. Thirty-one patients had single ventricle repair and 27 had biventricular repair. Median duration of support with the oxygenator was 6 days. Thirty-nine (67%) patients were successfully weaned off the support, but only 24 (41%) survived to hospital discharge. Chief complications were renal failure (31%), neurologic complications (29%), and sepsis (16%). Multivariable logistic regression analysis identified 10 days or more of extracorporeal membrane oxygenation (odds ratio = 6.1), urine output less than 2 mL·kg-1·h -1 in first 24 hours (odds ratio = 15), renal failure (odds ratio = 9.4), and pH less than 7.35 after 24 hours of extracorporeal membrane oxygenation (odds ratio = 82) as significant independent factors associated with failure to wean off extracorporeal membrane oxygenation. Factors associated with failure of hospital discharge despite successful decannulation were as follows: extracorporeal membrane oxygenator support time of 10 days or more, red blood cell transfusion of greater than 1000 mL/kg during the entire period of oxygenator support, and sepsis. Patients with single ventricle repair were at higher risk of hospital mortality. Conclusion: Longer duration of extracorporeal membrane oxygenator support, low pH and urine output in the first 24 hours, and renal failure are significant factors associated with mortality during extracorporeal membrane oxygenator support. Exposure to high amounts of blood transfusion during extracorporeal oxygenation, extended extracorporeal membrane oxygenator support, and sepsis increase risk of death after successful decannulation.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)330-336.e2
JournalJournal of Thoracic and Cardiovascular Surgery
Issue number2
StatePublished - 2010
Externally publishedYes


  • CHD
  • CPB
  • CPR
  • ECMO
  • PRBCs
  • cardiopulmonary bypass
  • cardiopulmonary resuscitation
  • congenital heart defects
  • extracorporeal membrane oxygenation
  • packed red blood cells


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