Joint Society of Critical Care Medicine-Extracorporeal Life Support Organization Task Force Position Paper on the Role of the Intensivist in the Initiation and Management of Extracorporeal Membrane Oxygenation

Crit Care Med. 2020 Apr 9. Online ahead of print

The role of the intensivist in the care of patients on extracorporeal membrane oxygenation continues to evolve and grow, especially when knowledge and familiarity of the issues surrounding extracorporeal membrane oxygenation selection, cannulation, and management are applied.

AddThis Sharing Buttons

Objectives

To define the role of the intensivist in the initiation and management of patients on extracorporeal membrane oxygenation.

Design

Retrospective review of the literature and expert consensus.

Setting

Series of in-person meetings, conference calls, and emails from January 2018 to March 2019.

Subjects

A multidisciplinary, expert Task Force was appointed and assembled by the Society of Critical Care Medicine and the Extracorporeal Life Support Organization. Experts were identified by their respective societies based on reputation, experience, and contribution to the field.

Interventions

A MEDLINE search was performed and all members of the Task Force reviewed relevant references, summarizing high-quality evidence when available. Consensus was obtained using a modified Delphi process, with agreement determined by voting using the RAND/UCLA scale, with score ranging from 1 to 9.

Measurements and Main Results

The Task Force developed 18 strong and five weak recommendations in five topic areas of extracorporeal membrane oxygenation initiation and management. These recommendations were organized into five areas related to the care of patients on extracorporeal membrane oxygenation: patient selection, management, mitigation of complications, coordination of multidisciplinary care, and communication with surrogate decision-makers. A common theme of the recommendations is extracorporeal membrane oxygenation is best performed by a multidisciplinary team, which intensivists are positioned to engage and lead.

Conclusions

The role of the intensivist in the care of patients on extracorporeal membrane oxygenation continues to evolve and grow, especially when knowledge and familiarity of the issues surrounding extracorporeal membrane oxygenation selection, cannulation, and management are applied.