What is the role of echocardiography in the workup of acute coronary syndrome (ACS)?

Updated: Sep 30, 2020
  • Author: David L Coven, MD, PhD; Chief Editor: Eric H Yang, MD  more...
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Answer

Echocardiograms may play an important role in the setting of ACS. Regional wall-motion abnormalities can be identified with this modality, and echocardiograms are especially helpful if the diagnosis is questionable.

An echocardiogram can also help in defining the extent of an infarction and in assessing overall function of the left and right ventricles. In addition, an echocardiogram can help to identify complications, such as acute mitral regurgitation, LV rupture, and pericardial effusion.

Absence of segmental wall-motion abnormality on echocardiography during active chest discomfort is a highly reliable indicator of a nonischemic origin of symptoms, although echocardiography is of limited value in patients whose symptoms have resolved or who have pre-existing wall-motion abnormalities.


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