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Medical Science Monitor Basic Research


Double Peripheral Venous and Arterial Cannulation for Extracorporeal Membrane Oxygenation in Combined Septic and Cardiogenic Shock

Unusual clinical course, Challenging differential diagnosis, Unusual setting of medical care, Unexpected drug reaction , Educational Purpose (only if useful for a systematic review or synthesis)

Markus Kredel, Steffen Kunzmann, Paul-Gerhardt Schlegel, Matthias Wölfl, Peter Nordbeck, Christoph Bühler, Christopher Lotz, Philipp M. Lepper, Johannes Wirbelauer, Norbert Roewer, Ralf M. Muellenbach

Germany Department of Anaesthesia and Critical Care, University Hospital of Würzburg, Würzburg, Germany

Am J Case Rep 2017; 18:723-727

DOI: 10.12659/AJCR.902485

Available online:

Published: 2017-06-28


BACKGROUND: The use of venoarterial extracorporeal membrane oxygenation (va-ECMO) via peripheral cannulation for septic shock is limited by blood flow and increased afterload for the left ventricle.
CASE REPORT: A 15-year-old girl with acute myelogenous leukemia, suffering from severe septic and cardiogenic shock, was treated by venoarterial extracorporeal membrane oxygenation (va-ECMO). Sufficient extracorporeal blood flow matching the required oxygen demand could only be achieved by peripheral cannulation of both femoral arteries. Venous drainage was performed with a bicaval cannula inserted via the left V. femoralis. To accomplish left ventricular unloading, an additional drainage cannula was placed in the left atrium via percutaneous atrioseptostomy (va-va-ECMO). Cardiac function recovered and the girl was weaned from the ECMO on day 6. Successful allogenic stem cell transplantation took place 2 months later.
CONCLUSIONS: In patients with vasoplegic septic shock and impaired cardiac contractility, double peripheral venoarterial extracorporeal membrane oxygenation (va-va-ECMO) with transseptal left atrial venting can by a lifesaving option.

Keywords: Extracorporeal Membrane Oxygenation, Leukemia, Myeloid, Acute, Shock, Cardiogenic, Shock, Septic