International Perfusion Association


Comparison of Conventional Methods with Pump-Controlled Retrograde Trial off for Weaning Adults with Cardiogenic Shock from Veno-Arterial Extracorporeal Membrane Oxygenation

Background: Pump-controlled retrograde trial off (PCRTO) is a safe, simple, and reversible method for weaning patients from veno-arterial extracorporeal membrane oxygenation (VA-ECMO). However, few studies have compared PCRTO to conventional weaning methods. This retrospective study aimed to compare PCRTO to non-PCRTO methods.

Methods: This study included patients who were weaned from VA-ECMO from January 2016 to December 2022 at our medical center. Demographic data, ECMO management, ECMO complications, survival to discharge, and cardiogenic shock after VA-ECMO weaning were compared between the 2 groups.

Results: Seventy patients who were weaned from VA-ECMO using PCRTO and 85 patients who were weaned with conventional methods were compared. Patient characteristics were not significantly different between the 2 groups. The rate of survival to discharge was significantly higher in the PCRTO group than in the non-PCRTO group (90% vs. 72%, p=0.01). The rates of freedom from all-cause mortality at 10, 30, and 50 days after weaning from ECMO were 75%, 55%, and 35% in the non-PCRTO group and 62%, 60%, and 58% in the PCRTO group, respectively (p=0.1). The incidence of cardiogenic shock after weaning from VA-ECMO was significantly higher in the non-PCRTO group (16% vs. 5%, p=0.04). In logistic regression analysis, PCRTO was a significant factor for survival to discharge (odds ratio, 2.42; 95% confidence interval, 1.29-5.28; p=0.02).

Conclusion: Compared to conventional methods, PCRTO is a feasible and reversible method, and it serves as a useful predictor of successful VA-ECMO weaning through a preload stress test.

Keywords: Extracorporeal membrane oxygenation; Prognosis; Weaning.

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