what is it and how can it help in medicine

One of the techniques used in medicine that is hardly talked about is the extracorporeal membrane oxygenation (either ECMO, for its acronym in English). Its importance is such that it can be used to treat different diseases.

what is the system ECMO? How long does therapy last? ECMO? Here we tell you what you should know about the ECMO.

What diseases can it be used for? ECMO?

Mayo Clinic explains that in the technique ECMOthe blood is pumped out of the patient’s body into a Extracorporeal circulation that removes carbon dioxide and returns oxygen-rich blood to body tissues.

If you are wondering about the reactions that returning blood to the human body can have, the Mayo Clinic points out that with this method, the blood is allowed to “dodge” the heart and the lungsso these organs can rest and heal.

ECMO is used for people in intensive carewhen the heart and lungs require help.

Covid-19 and the other diseases that can be treated with ECMO

Mayo Clinic highlights that the ECMO can be used in the medical care of the coronavirus, the Acute Respiratory Distress Syndrome and other infections, in addition to:

  • Acute myocardial infarctions (heart attack)
  • Decompensated cardiomyopathy (heart muscle disease)
  • Myocarditis (Inflammation of the heart muscle)
  • Septicemia (Reaction to an infection, which can be life-threatening)
  • severe hypothermia (low body temperature)
  • Difficulties after a transplant
  • cardiogenic shock (shock caused by the heart not pumping enough blood)

When the lungs are affected and any of the following ailments occur, it can also be used the ECMO:

  • Respiratory insufficiency
  • High blood pressure in the lungs
  • The fetus has inhaled waste products in the womb

Are there risks with ECMO?

Yes, there are risks with ECMO. According to the Mayo Clinic, some of the most common complications seen with extracorporeal membrane oxygenation are:

  • Thromboembolism (blood clots)
  • Coagulopathy (Blood Clotting Disorders)
  • Limb ischemia (Blood loss in the legs, hands, or feet)
  • cerebrovascular accidents

“The results associated with therapy depend on the severity of the condition that led the person to use the therapy. extracorporeal membrane oxygenation (ECMO)”, mentions the Mayo Clinic.

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