New Delhi: Former Finance Minister Arun Jaitley (66) who is admitted in Delhi AIIMS since August 9 has been put on an ECMO (Extracorporeal membrane oxygenation) and an IABP (Intra-aortic balloon pump) support, read the health bulletin.

In layman language, an ECMO machine pumps and oxygenates a person’s blood outside the body which allows the heart and lungs to rest. When a person is connected to an ECMO that means the blood is being pumped into an artificial lung which adds oxygen in it and takes out the carbon dioxide; the blood is then warmed according to the body temperature and pushed back into the body.

ECMO is used in patients recovering from a heart or lung surgery.

Whereas an IABP or an intra-aortic balloon pump is used to help the heart pump more blood in case it is unable to in the required amount needed for the body to function.

According to, the IABP consists of a thin, flexible tube called a catheter. Attached to the tip of the catheter is a long balloon. This is called an intra-aortic balloon, or IAB. The other end of the catheter attaches to a computer console. This console has a mechanism for inflating and deflating the balloon at the proper time when your heart beats.

Arun Jaitley was rushed to AIIMS on August 9 over complaints of difficulty in breathing. Jaitley, a lawyer by profession, is diabetic and has faced several health issues in the recent past. He was hospitalised in May and had to skip interim budget in February as he was recovering in the US after undergoing surgery for soft tissue cancer in New York, in January.

He also took a break from the Finance Ministry last May after undergoing a renal transplant at AIIMS. On both occasions, Union Minister Piyush Goyal was given interim charge of the ministry.