Design and implementation of a modular ECMO simulator
Extracorporeal membrane oxygenation (ECMO) is a high-complexity life-saving procedure riddled with mechanical complications that can place the patient in a critical state where fast and coordinated actions are required to avoid mortality. Thus, patients on ECMO are supervised round the clock by highly trained nurses and perfusionists. Currently, ECMO training programs include patient emergency simulations performed with different levels of success. Some training facilities use mannequins that have computer-controlled physiological parameters such as heart rate and oxygen saturation. The circuit parameters such as pressure are manually adjusted per scenario; air and artificial blood are manually injected to indicate problems such as air embolism, and hypovolemia. 1 Despite being realistic, using an actual ECMO circuit for simulation training purposes has disadvantages such as the use of expensive disposable equipment (oxygenation membrane), lack of oxygenation color differentials, and manual circuit adjustments and injections.