Transoesophageal Echocardiography

A transoesophageal echocardiogram (TOE) is an endoscopic ultrasound examination of the heart and large blood vessels.  A TOE produces much clearer images of the heart than a standard echocardiogram. The procedure and potential complications will be explained to you in detail and then you will be asked to sign a consent form.  An anaesthetic spray will then be sprayed onto the back of your throat to numb the area and make it easier for you to swallow the probe. A sedative medication will be given to you intravenously to make the procedure more comfortable. Images of the heart and major blood vessels are recorded onto a computer for further analysis. The procedure usually takes about 30 minutes.