Sedatives and analgesics are often administered to critically ill children supported by extracorporeal membrane oxygenation (ECMO) to facilitate comfort and to decrease risks of life-threatening complications. Optimization of sedative and analgesic dosing is necessary to achieve desired therapeutic benefits and must consider interactions between the circuit and patient that may affect drug metabolism, clearance, and impact on target organs. This paper reviews existing in vitro and pediatric in vivo literature concerning the effects of the ECMO circuit on sedative and analgesic disposition and offers dosing guidance for the management of critically ill children receiving these drugs.
Keywords: child; deep sedation; extracorporeal membrane oxygenation; infant; newborn; pain management; pharmacokinetics.
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