Patient Success Story- Ward Forsyth


UMMC patient Ward Forsyth, the first in the U.S. to use a new, smaller, ECMO (extracorporeal membrane oxygenation) system explains the advantages of the device and how it helped him to stay healthy enough to receive a lung transplant. The portable device is a simplified version of an ECMO machine, which uses a pump to circulate blood through an artificial lung and back to the bloodstream. Previously, a person who was on the system had to remain lying down with large tubes placed in the neck and groin. But, doctors at the University of Maryland modified the ECMO system so that a simple IV line is placed in the upper chest, allowing the patient to sit up, walk and remain active. This system kept Forsyth alive and actually enabled him to become a candidate for a lung transplant. Forsyth received a bilateral lung transplant at the University of Maryland Medical Center on April 8, 2009.

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