What is Trans-Esophageal Echocardiography?

A Traditional Echocardiogram (Echocardiography) uses sound waves to display images of the heart. In trans-esophageal echocardiography, also known as TEE, the ultrasound probe is passed down the throat and in to the esophagus. The esophagus is the tube that goes from the throat to the stomach. The esophagus sits very close to the heart and this procedure allows for clearer images of the heart when compared to other methods.

TEE trans esophageal echogardiogram

TEE is a specialized ultrasound test which allows your cardiologist to obtain high-resolution images of your heart and its valves. The procedure is used to identify and assess the heart’s function and structures through the use of sound waves. It is used to enhance the information that is obtained from standard echocardiography or can also be used as a stand alone diagnostic procedure.

A trans-esophageal echocardiagram can be performed to look for specific cardiac problems, including, an enlarged heart, thickening of the heart walls, heart valve malfunction, infections and blood clots as well as other heart conditions.

A TEE can utilize one, or more, of several special types of echocardiography:

  • Doppler echocardiography
  • Color Doppler
  • 2-D (two-dimensional) Echocardiography
  • 3-D (three-dimensional) Echocardiography

Why is a trans-esophageal echocardiogram performed?

TEE is used to evaluate the internal structure of the heart and determine the path of blood flow in certain inherited cardiovascular disorders. TEE can also be used during heart surgery to evaluate the effects of surgical intervention to the heart, such as repair of congenital heart defects. In addition, TEE can be used to evaluate the valves of the heart to look for damage or infection.

A transesophageal echocardiogram (TEE) is often times used by Dr. Khoo to assess the overall function of the heart’s chambers and valves, determine the presence of many types of heart disease (such as valvular heart disease, myocardial disease, pericardial disease, cardiac masses and congenital heart disease), evaluate the effectiveness of medical or surgical treatments and evaluate abnormalities of the left atrium.

When echocardiography is indicated, but other circumstances are present that may interfere with the ability to obtain adequate images of the heart, a TEE may be a more appropriate option.

Depending on the results of the TEE, additional tests or procedures may be scheduled to gather further diagnostic information.

We encourage you to ask as many questions as necessary until you are confident that you understand your heart condition, medications or procedures you may be considering.

In her practice as a top heart doctor in Albuquerque, Dr. Michelle Khoo wants you to be informed, comfortable and confident about your treatment plan.

Quality Healthcare is at the Heart of Everything We Do.

To schedule a consultation with Dr. Khoo call 1-505-248-1802 or click here to request an appointment online.

Khoo & Associates Cardiology and Wellness is a boutique Cardiovascular Health & Wellness practice that is focused on delivering outstanding, comprehensive and ethical cardiovascular care to patients in Albuquerque and the surrounding counties of Bernalillo, Sandoval, Torrance and Valencia in New Mexico.

Our experienced and dedicated team offers our patients the combined collective experience and knowledge necessary to ensure the highest level of patient care in two convenient office locations – Downtown Albuquerque and Rio Rancho.