Skip to main content

beta This is a new site, your feedback will help us to improve it.

Extracorporeal Membrane Oxygenation (ECMO) Service: Adult

Published on 30 September 2021

The adult Extracorporeal Membrane Oxygenation (ECMO) Service is based within the Royal Infirmary Hospital in Aberdeen. ECMO provides temporary life support to adults with severe respiratory failure, while allowing the lungs to rest and recover from injury.

What is extra-corporeal life support?

Extra-corporeal life support uses extra-corporeal membrane oxygenation (ECMO), a supportive intensive care technique offered to adults who develop acute but potentially reversible respiratory failure.

An ECMO machine is similar to a heart-lung bypass machine used for open heart surgery. Extra corporeal means ‘outside the body’ and membrane oxygenation means that the blood has oxygen added to it via a membrane, or 'artificial lung'. ECMO continuously circulates blood from the patient through an artificial lung, which adds oxygen to the blood and removes waste carbon dioxide, before returning it to, and circulating it around the patient's body.

Lead clinician

  • Mr Ian Scott, Critical Care Consultant
  • Mr Stephen Friar, Critical Care Consultant

Address

Aberdeen Royal Infirmary
Foresterhill Road
Aberdeen
AB25 2ZN

NSD contact

nss.specialistservices@nhs.scot

Please note that NSD does not directly provide medical services and we won't be able to answer queries about your own care or appointments. If you would like to discuss any aspects of your care, please contact your primary healthcare provider. This might be your GP, Consultant, Nurse or other healthcare professional. They will be best placed to give you the right advice.