What is an Echocardiography

Echocardiography, also known as an ultrasound of the heart, is a safe, noninvasive diagnostic test used to examine the heart by creating images out of sound waves. This helps determine the size and shape of the heart, as well as how well the different components are functioning.Echocardiography Beverly Hills

An Echocardiography can help evaluate the structures of the heart, as well as the direction of blood flow within it. Technicians specially trained in echocardiography produce the images and videos, often using a special probe or transducer that is placed in various places on the chest wall, to view the heart from different directions. Cardiologists, or heart specialists, are trained to evaluate these images to assess heart function and provide a report of the results. The echocardiogram is just one of the many tests that can be done to evaluate heart anatomy and function.

An echocardiogram can be used to examine:

  • The size and function of the heart
  • The strength of the heart muscles
  • Heart valve malfunctions: Blockage or Leakiness (valvular regurgitation or stenosis)
  • Heart structure abnormalities
  • Problems in the aorta
  • Evaluate the effectiveness of medical or surgical treatments


Trans-Esophageal Echocardiography (TEE)

A Transesophageal Echocardiogram (TEE) is an alternative way to perform an echocardiogram, in which a specialized probe is inserted into the patient’s esophagus (throat, similar to an endoscopy) and creates a visual image of the heart. This procedure is also used to determine shape and size of the heart, as well as functionality. However, unlike regular echocardiograms, TEEs are able to view certain structures more clearly, including the aorta, pulmonary artery, heart valves and coronary arteries. TEEs are also highly sensitive to detecting blood clots in the left atrium as well as infections of the heart valves.

In order to discover more about Echocardiography and its implications please view this PDF by the American Heart Association.

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