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Emergency Medical Minute


Feb 6, 2023

Contributor: Aaron Lessen, MD

Educational Pearls:

  • Extracorporeal Membrane Oxygenation (ECMO) has been attempted as an adjunct to CPR during cardiac arrest but few studies on outcomes exist 
  • One prior small study stopped early when it showed ECMO with CPR (ECPR) was significantly superior to CPR
  • Recent large, multicenter randomized control study in Netherlands evaluated neurologic outcomes in CPR versus ECPR 
    • At 30 days and 6 months no significant difference between the groups was found 
  • More studies are required determine if certain patients may benefit from ECPR


Belohlavek J, Smalcova J, Rob D, et al. Effect of Intra-arrest Transport, Extracorporeal Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation, and Immediate Invasive Assessment and Treatment on Functional Neurologic Outcome in Refractory Out-of-Hospital Cardiac Arrest: A Randomized Clinical Trial. JAMA. 2022;327(8):737-747. doi:10.1001/jama.2022.1025


Suverein MM, Delnoij TSR, Lorusso R, et al. Early Extracorporeal CPR for Refractory Out-of-Hospital Cardiac Arrest. N Engl J Med. 2023;388(4):299-309. doi:10.1056/NEJMoa2204511


Summarized by Kirsten Hughes, MS4 | Edited by John Spartz, MD, & Erik Verzemnieks, MD


The Emergency Medical Minute is excited to announce that we are now offering AMA PRA Category 1 credits™ via online course modules. To access these and for more information, visit our website at and create an account.