What is the role of TEE in the diagnosis of infective endocarditis (IE)?

Updated: Jan 03, 2019
  • Author: John L Brusch, MD, FACP; Chief Editor: Michael Stuart Bronze, MD  more...
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TEE was developed to overcome the problems in visualizing prosthetic valve thrombi and right-sided events. TEE eliminates the need for the operator to find a clear field for the beam. The use of higher-frequency waveforms is permitted because of the decreased distance between the heart and the probe. The sensitivity of TEE in detecting the vegetations of NVE is 90-100%. In patients with PVE, the sensitivity of TEE under optimal circumstances is greater than 90%.

TEE successfully visualizes vegetations of the leads or of the tricuspid valve in more than 90% of cases of pacemaker IE, compared with less than the 50% achieved by TTE.

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