Tracheostomy Practices and Outcomes in Children During Respiratory Extracorporeal Membrane Oxygenation.

Journal Article (Journal Article)

OBJECTIVES: Children receiving prolonged extracorporeal membrane oxygenation (ECMO) support may benefit from tracheostomy during ECMO by facilitating rehabilitation; however, the procedure carries risks, especially hemorrhagic complications. Knowledge of tracheostomy practices and outcomes of ECMO-supported children who undergo tracheostomy on ECMO may inform decision-making. DESIGN: Retrospective cohort study. SETTING: ECMO centers contributing to the Extracorporeal Life Support Organization registry. PATIENTS: Children from birth to 18 years who received ECMO support for greater than or equal to 7 days for respiratory failure from January 1, 2015, to December 31, 2019. INTERVENTIONS: None. MEASUREMENTS AND MAIN RESULTS: Three thousand six hundred eighty-five children received at least 7 days of ECMO support for respiratory failure. The median duration of ECMO support was 13.0 days (interquartile range [IQR], 9.3-19.9 d), and inhospital mortality was 38.7% (1,426/3,685). A tracheostomy was placed during ECMO support in 94/3,685 (2.6%). Of those who received a tracheostomy on ECMO, the procedure was performed at a median 13.2 days (IQR, 6.3-25.9 d) after initiation of ECMO. Surgical site bleeding was documented in 26% of children who received a tracheostomy (12% after tracheostomy placement). Among children who received a tracheostomy, the median duration of ECMO support was 24.2 days (IQR, 13.0-58.7 d); inhospital mortality was 30/94 (32%). Those that received a tracheostomy before 14 days on ECMO were older (median age, 15.8 yr [IQR, 4.7-15.5] vs 11.7 yr [IQR, 11.5-17.3 yr]; p =0.002) and more likely to have been supported on venovenous-ECMO (84% vs 52%; p = 0.001). Twenty-two percent (11/50) of those who received a tracheostomy before 14 days died in the hospital, compared with 19/44 (43%) of those who received a tracheostomy at 14 days or later (p = 0.03). CONCLUSIONS: Tracheostomies during ECMO were uncommon in children. One in four patients who received a tracheostomy on ECMO had surgical site bleeding. Children who had tracheostomies placed after 14 days were younger and had worse outcomes, potentially representing tracheostomy as a "secondary" strategy for prolonged ECMO support.

Full Text

Duke Authors

Cited Authors

  • Kohne, JG; MacLaren, G; Rider, E; Carr, BD; Mallory, P; Gebremariam, A; Friedman, ML; Barbaro, RP

Published Date

  • April 1, 2022

Published In

Volume / Issue

  • 23 / 4

Start / End Page

  • 268 - 276

PubMed ID

  • 35081085

Pubmed Central ID

  • PMC9197266

International Standard Serial Number (ISSN)

  • 1529-7535

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

  • 10.1097/PCC.0000000000002902


  • eng

Conference Location

  • United States