EDECMO 24 – Weaning VA-ECMO, with Deirdre Murphy

In this episode, Zack and Joe talk with Deirdre Murphy, the Deputy Director of the ICU, director of the cardiothoracic ICU at the Alfred Hospital in Melbourne, Australia. The Alfred has put itself on the map in so many ways over the past decade. Home to Stephen Bernard (of the original Hypothermia after ROSC without RONF fame), Chris Nickson (@precordialthump, @ragepodcast, @intensiveblog, #SMACC, lifeinthefastlane.com), and good friends Jason McClure, Steve McGloughlin, Josh Ihle, Paul Nixon, and Deirdre Murphy, The Alfred is becoming a mecca for advanced resuscitation and ECMO/ECPR.  In this episode we sat down with Dr. Murphy to discuss the nuances of weaning a patient from ECMO.

As ED Docs, Zack and I find ourselves at the heroic end of the resuscitation spectrum when the dying patient goes on pump…but what happens at the other end? What happens in the hours, days, and weeks that follow?  Listen to this episode to find out…

 

Deirdre Murphy MB (Hons), MRCPI, FCARCSI, FCICM, DDU (Crit Care), PGDipEcho

Deirdre Murphy MB (Hons), MRCPI, FCARCSI, FCICM, DDU (Crit Care), PGDipEcho

Deirdre Murphy MB (Hons), MRCPI, FCARCSI, FCICM, DDU (Crit Care), PGDipEcho

Deirdre is Deputy Director ICU, Director of the Cardiothoracic ICU at The Alfred Hospital with particular interests in echocardiography and cardiac intensive care, especially mechanical circulatory supports including Ventricular Assist Devices and ECMO. Deirdre originally trained in Ireland with postgraduate training in general medicine and anaesthesia prior to undertaking intensive care training in Australia in 1999. She has been an Intensivist at The Alfred since 2003. Deirdre has been using echo in clinical practice since 2002 and heads the ICU echocardiography programme at the Alfred. She is convenor of the Alfred Critical Care Echocardiography Course and the Alfred TOE course and teaches on many of the other Alfred courses including the Ultrasound, ECMO and HeART courses.

A paper just published in Intensive Care Medicine followed this algorithm:

(Intensive Care Med (2015) 41:902-905)

How to wean a patient from veno-arterial extracorporeal membrane oxygenation

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Some Notes

Signs of improvement

  • Pulsatility indicates the patient is getting better
  • ETCO2 starts to rise
  • Weaning Vasopressors

 

Want More??

Check out Dr. Murphy’s talk from smaccGOLD on “ECMO: What could go wrong?”

Also, check out the incredible resources on ECMO on the INTENSIVE blog (the Alfred ICU Education blog)

Update:

Can we use ETCO2 to assess weaning?

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