This is an endoscopic echocardiogram. This means that the ultrasound equipment is placed on the end of a long flexible instrument for an internal view. It enables the doctor to take a close look at the heart, bypassing the lungs and ribs which obstruct the external view.
It is performed in the recovery area or the catheterisation Laboratory (Cath Lab) by a cardiologist and cardiac team. It can be performed independently or as part of a larger procedure. It takes approximately 45 minutes. The patient will be given a sedative or general anaesthetic and will remain asleep or relaxed throughout.
The thin lubricated endoscope is inserted down the patient’s throat into the oesophagus and stomach. From there, images of the heart are obtained. The patient is monitored throughout the procedure and recovery time.