Transesophageal Echocardiography

Also known as: TEE.

What is transesophageal echocardiography?

Unlike a standard echocardiogram, the echo transducer that produces the sound waves for transesophageal echo or TEE is attached to a thin tube that passes through your mouth, down your throat and into your esophagus. Because the esophagus is so close to the upper chambers of the heart, very clear images of those heart structures and valves can be obtained.

Most TEEs are performed during cardiac surgery or cardiac catheterization to assist the procedure.

What happens during the procedure?

After the administration of general anesthesia or sedation, the TEE probe is advanced into the esophagus by a pediatric cardiac anesthesiologist or a pediatric cardiologist with expertise TEE. 

Is any special preparation needed?

One of our nurses or nurse practitioners will give you instruction the day prior to the procedure.

What are the risk factors?

The few risks of TEE involve passing the probe from your mouth down into your throat and esophagus. You may have a sore throat for a day or two after the test. In very rare cases, TEE causes the esophagus to tear.

Reviewed by: Nao Sasaki, MD

This page was last updated on: February 18, 2020 09:26 AM

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