Veno-venous ECMO as a safe bridge to recovery in a patient with severe peripartum cardiomyopathy – learning from errors

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Abstract

Peripartum cardiomyopathy (PPCM) is a rare disorder of unknown etiology and pathogenesis. The most important tool for diagnostic confirmation is transthoracic echocardiography. The recommended management of PPCM in pregnancy is summarized by the European Society of Cardiology Heart Failure Guidelines. Few data exist on the treatment of patients with fulminant PPCM and the need for extracorporeal membrane oxygenation (ECMO) in this context. We report on a young multiparous woman with cardiogenic shock caused by severe PPCM who was successfully, but atypically, supported with veno-venous ECMO as a bridge to recovery immediately after the birth of her third child.

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