MELD Score Predicts Outcomes in Patients Undergoing Venovenous Extracorporeal Membrane Oxygenation

Satoshi Watanabe, Chitaru Kurihara, Adwaiy Manerikar, Sanket Thakkar, Mark Saine, Ankit Bharat*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Venovenous extracorporeal membrane oxygenation (VV ECMO) is increasingly being used in the management of severe acute respiratory distress syndrome (ARDS). The Respiratory ECMO Survival Prediction (RESP) score is most commonly used to predict survival of patients undergoing ECMO. However, the RESP score does not incorporate renal and hepatic dysfunction which are frequently a part of the constellation of multiorgan dysfunction associated with ARDS. The Model for End-Stage Liver Disease (MELD) incorporates both liver and kidney dysfunction and is used in the risk stratification of liver transplant recipients as well as those undergoing cardiac surgery. The aim of this study was to assess the prognostic value of the MELD score in patients undergoing VV ECMO. Patients undergoing VV ECMO from 2016 to 2019 were extracted from our prospectively maintained institutional ECMO database and stratified based on MELD score. Baseline clinical, laboratory, and follow-up data, as well as post-ECMO outcomes, were compared. Of 71 patients, 50 patients (70.4%) had a MELD score <12 and 21 (29.6%) had a MELD score ≥12. The higher MELD score was associated with increased post-ECMO mortality but reduced risk of dialysis and tracheostomy. In multivariate analysis, higher MELD score (HR 1.35, 95% CI = 1.07-2.75), lower body surface area (HR 0.16, 0.04-0.65), RESP score (HR 0.75, 95% CI = 0.64-0.87), and platelet count (HR 0.99, 95% CI = 0.98-0.99), were significant predictors of postoperative mortality. We conclude that MELD score can be used complementarily to the RESP score to predict outcomes in patients with ARDS undergoing VV ECMO.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)871-877
Number of pages7
JournalASAIO Journal
Issue number8
StatePublished - Aug 1 2021


  • MELD score
  • acute respiratory distress syndrome
  • anticoagulation
  • extracorporeal membrane oxygenation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biophysics
  • Bioengineering
  • Biomaterials
  • Biomedical Engineering


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