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Table 1 Hypoxemia during extracorporeal membrane oxygenation (ECMO): causes and recommendations

From: Extracorporeal life support for patients with acute respiratory distress syndrome: report of a Consensus Conference

Causes Recommendations
Recirculation Check the position of the cannulae
Low flow with regards to metabolic demand Adapt the diameter of the cannulae and correct hypovolemia
Failure of the oxygenator Measure post-oxygenator blood gases
Inhibition of hypoxic pulmonary vasoconstriction and worsening of the pulmonary shunt Measure pre, post-oxygenator and patient blood gases
Worsening of the pulmonary disease