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Name of Media:

Safety of Propofol for Oxygenator Exchange in Extracorporeal Membrane Oxygenation


Benjamin Hohlfelder, PharmD, BCPS; Paul M. Szumita, PharmD, FCCM, BCCCP, BCPS; Susan Lagambina, RRT; Gerald Weinhouse, MD; Jeremy R. DeGrado, PharmD, BCCCP, BCPS.

Publisher or Source:

The American Society for Artificial Internal Organs

Type of Media:

Medical Research

Media Originally for:

General Medical Professionals

Country of Origin:

United States

Primary Focus of Media:

Pre-Use of PICS Designation

COVID-19 Related:



The purpose of this analysis is to describe the safety of propofol administration in adult ECMO patients. We performed a prospective cohort analysis of patients utilizing ECMO at Brigham and Women’s Hospital between February 2013 and October 2015. Patients were included if they utilized ECMO for at least 48 hours. The major endpoint of the analysis was the median oxygenator lifespan. Oxygenator exchanges were analyzed by the number of patients requiring
an oxygenator exchange and the number of oxygenator exchanges per ECMO day. A priori analysis was performed comparing outcomes between patients who did and did not receive propofol during their ECMO course. During the study, 43 patients were included in the analysis. Sixteen patients utilized propofol during their ECMO course. There were 12 oxygenator exchanges during therapy. Oxygenator exchange occurred on 1.8% of ECMO days. The median oxygenator lifespan was 7 days. Patients who utilized propofol had a significantly longer
oxygenator lifespan (p=0.02). Among patients who received propofol, patients who required oxygenator exchange utilized a significantly lower median daily dose of propofol (p<0.001). The use of propofol appears safe in ECMO with regards to oxygenator viability. Contrary to expected, oxygenator lifespan was significantly longer among patients who received propofol.

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