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ABSTRACT: The use of two-dimensional (2D) transesophageal echocardiography (TEE) is nearly universal in cardiac surgical operating rooms around the world. Cardiac anesthesiologists or cardiologists perform these examinations, facilitating significant advancements in surgical techniques by the immediacy and accuracy of intra-operative ultrasound imaging. Three-dimensional (3D) TEE capabilities have been available since the 1990s but penetration has been poor. With the advent of real-time 3D TEE, interest in this technology has increased dramatically. This is a comprehensive review of English language publications in the field from 2007 to 2009.
This review utilized Pubmed databases, with search strategy based on primary key words: 3D echocardiography, transesophageal echocardiography, cardiac surgery, and/or cardiopulmonary bypass. Three major areas of clinical practice are impacted by the findings of these studies: cardiac valve repair and replacement, assessment of ventricular function, and image guidance for percutaneous procedures.
The review resulted in the conclusion that 3D TEE provides unique and dynamic 3D spatial information that cannot be obtained by 2D TEE or fluoroscopy. In addition to technical and process advancements, future studies should address educational value in terms of acceleration of learning curves, and impact on surgical decision making.
Current opinion in anaesthesiology 11/2009; 23(1):80-8.