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Preoperative Venoarterial Extracorporeal Membrane Oxygenation Slashes Risk Score in Advanced Structural Heart Disease
Watkins and colleagues report their use of preoperative extracorporeal membrane oxygenation (ECMO) to evaluate and stabilize structural heart patients who were at extreme surgical risk. Twelve patients undergoing surgery for severe prosthetic mitral stenosis, ruptured papillary muscle, ischemic ventricular septal defect, or severe aortic stenosis were included. ECMO-associated complications included leg ischemia, wound infection, and major bleeding. Preoperative ECMO support improved the predicted operative mortality risk, and survival was 82% after one year.