Jun 25, 2018
22-MONTH-OLD EMMA ARRIVED AT SCHNEIDER CHILDREN’S WITH A FEVER; A SHORT WHILE LATER HER LUNGS COLLAPSED AND SHE WAS CONNECTED TO AN ECMO MACHINE THAT REPLACES THE ACTIVITY OF THE HEART AND LUNGS FOR 68 DAYS
While ECMO can save lives, complications and dangers are omnipresent; therefore every effort is made as far as possible to minimize connection to the machine
Being connected to the machine for 68 days is an extraordinary length of time and a rare occurrence!
Emma Schneider, aged 22 months, arrived at Schneider Children’s ER with a fever. While being treated, her lungs collapsed. She was transferred in critical condition to the Pediatric Intensive Care Unit headed by Dr. Elhanan Nahum and thereafter to the Cardiac Intensive Care Unit headed by Prof. Ovdi Dagan, where she was connected to an ECMO machine for 68 days. ECMO (Extracorporeal Membrane Oxygenation) replaces the activity of the heart and lungs.
The prolonged connection to ECMO allowed Emma’s lungs to recover and she was able to be discharged after 103 days of hospitalization due to the professional and efficient care accorded to minimize the scope of complications from an extended connection to the system.
Little Emma’s parents were emotional in thanking the medical team: “Thank you very much for bringing our daughter back to life. The dedicated and skilled care our daughter received from the ER and the Pediatric Intensive Care Unit through the lengthy period in the Cardiac Intensive Care Unit saved her life. Thanks to Prof. Ovdi Dagan, Dr. Ofer Schiller, and Dr. Eran Shostak for their unrelenting care, for their ability to make difficult decisions, for their daily contact and sharing every dilemma, for their patience and listening; to ECMO technician Golan Shukrun for his devoted and professional care even on weekends and irregular hours; and to head nurse Rim Abd El Hai and the nursing staff in the department: We were constantly moved knowing that our daughter was in safe hands because they did everything possible for her and did not stop at anything. It is surprising and amazing, and not taken for granted to receive attention and service like this in a public hospital”.
Prof. Dagan stated that “there is no doubt that due to the alertness of the medical team, and her being in the hospital which has an ECMO machine and advanced care systems, together with all the disciplines under one roof, that the toddler’s life was saved. Such a lengthy connection to ECMO is most rare.”