Two forms of non-invasive echocardiography diagnostics are available at
St. Mary's Heart Center.
A transthoracic echocardiogram is a non-invasive test. During the procedure,
a wand (transducer) sends sound waves to the heart as it is moved over
the patient’s skin on the chest area. Images of the front and sides
of the heart are produced.
Transesophageal Echocardiography (Tee)
An ultrasound technique in which a probe, about as large as a pinky finger,
is placed in the esophagus to "look" at the heart from behind.
Transesophageal echocardiography is much more sensitive than transthoracic
(across the chest) echocardiography, as overlying structures (bone and
lungs) do not obscure the view. This technique requires sedation in almost