How does an ECMO machine work?

The ECMO machine will drain the blood from the vein, add the oxygen and remove the carbon dioxide, warm the blood and then return the blood to the artery and “pump” the blood through the body. This method allows the blood to “bypass” the heart and lungs, allowing them to rest and get better.

Accordingly, is ECMO considered life support?

Extracorporeal membrane oxygenation (ECMO), also known as extracorporeal life support (ECLS), is an extracorporeal technique of providing prolonged cardiac and respiratory support to persons whose heart and lungs are unable to provide an adequate amount of gas exchange or perfusion to sustain life.