ECMO support is an established life saving therapy for potentially reversible respiratory and/or cardiac failure. Improvement of outcome depends on effective treatment of the primary diagnosis and complications. Adequate drug therapy is important in reaching these goals. Pharmacokinetic and pharmacodynamic data in neonates and older children on ECMO are sparse. Most studies show altered volume of distribution and clearance for the drugs studied. This article gives an overview of the available PK and PD studies in neonates and children on ECMO, suggests possible mechanisms of altered PK and PD and identifies areas of interest for further research.

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Current Drug Metabolism
Department of Pediatrics

Wildschut, E.D, Ahsman, M.J, Houmes, R.J.M, Pokorna, P, de Wildt, S.N, Mathot, R.A, & Tibboel, D. (2012). Pharmacotherapy in neonatal and pediatric extracorporeal membrane oxygenation (ECMO). Current Drug Metabolism, 13(6), 767–777. doi:10.2174/138920012800840383