Case of the Month #11 - VV ECMO
Control of decarboxylation
Carbon dioxide removal is directly related to sweep gas flow rate: as the flow rate is increased more CO2 removal will occur. Contribution from the native lungs to removal of CO2 will be additive.
The control of CO2 allows not only maintenance of safe acid base status but also reduction in tidal volume and alveolar pressure avoiding the injurious effects of mechanical ventilation.