Why might I need a TEE?
Transesophageal echocardiography may be done to evaluate signs and symptoms that may suggest:
Atherosclerosis. This is a gradual clogging of the arteries by fatty materials and other substances in the blood.
Cardiomyopathy. This is an enlargement of the heart due to thickening or weakening of the heart muscle.
Congenital heart disease. These defects occur during formation of the fetus' heart. TEE can help assess and locate the abnormality as well as determine its effect on heart blood flow.
Heart failure. A condition in which the heart muscle has become weakened to an extent that blood can’t be pumped efficiently. This can cause fluid buildup (congestion) in the blood vessels and lungs, as well as the feet, ankles, and other parts of the body.
Aneurysm. This is a weakening and bulging of a part of the heart muscle or the aorta (the large artery that carries oxygenated blood out of the heart to the rest of the body).
Heart valve disease. Malfunction of one or more of the heart valves that may block blood flow within the heart or result in blood leaking backwards (regurgitation).
Cardiac tumor. A tumor of the heart may occur on the outside surface of the heart, within one or more chambers of the heart, or within the muscle tissue of the heart.
Pericarditis. This is an inflammation or infection of the sac that surrounds the heart.
Infective endocarditis. This is an infection of the heart, usually affecting the heart valves.
Aortic dissection. This is a tear in the wall of the aorta.
Blood clot and stroke. Blood clots can form inside the heart chambers, break free, and then flow to the brain or other areas of the body. This can cause a stroke or other problems. Most often these clots form with irregular heart rhythms or stagnant blood flow in the heart.