Send to

Choose Destination
J Am Soc Echocardiogr. 2012 Aug;25(8):874-81. doi: 10.1016/j.echo.2012.05.009. Epub 2012 Jun 29.

Transesophageal echocardiography in critically ill acute postoperative infants: comparison of AcuNav intracardiac echocardiographic and microTEE miniaturized transducers.

Author information

Heart Institute for Children, Hope Children's Hospital, Chicago Medical School, Oak Lawn, Illinois 60453, USA.



Multiple barriers to transthoracic echocardiography are present in critically ill infants immediately after surgery. Transesophageal echocardiography (TEE) is sometimes needed to obtain specific important information that transthoracic echocardiography fails to demonstrate. Formerly, the investigators used the AcuNav intracardiac echocardiographic (ICE) intravascular ultrasound transducer (8 Fr, 2.5 mm, 64-element crystal array, multifrequency [5.5-10 MHz], single longitudinal plane, linear phased array [Siemens Medical Solutions USA, Inc., Mountain View, CA]). Recently, the investigators have also used the microTEE transducer (8-mm transducer tip, 5.2-mm shaft, multifrequency [3-8 MHz], multiplane phased array, 32-element probe [Philips Medical Systems, Andover, MA]). Both transducers have two-dimensional, M-mode, color Doppler, and pulsed-wave and continuous-wave Doppler capabilities. The aim of this study was to compare the efficacy, safety, ease of insertion, capabilities, utilization, and cost of the AcuNav ICE transducer versus those of the microTEE transducer.


A retrospective review of all 50 postoperative critically ill infants who underwent TEE using the AcuNav and microTEE in the past 5 years was conducted. TEE was performed as ordered by the attending physician to answer a specific question not answered by transthoracic echocardiography.


In all cases, the clinical information sought was obtained. The AcuNav ICE transducer was safe, easy to insert through the transnasal route, and did not require paralysis; however, it had a limited number of echocardiographic views and had greater sterilization cost. The microTEE transducer had greater echocardiographic capabilities and lower sterilization cost; however, it was slightly more difficult to insert, had a few manageable complications, and required more sedation and paralysis.


TEE in this setting has increased because of demonstrated efficacy and safety. Both the AcuNav ICE and microTEE transducers are useful and effective in this critical clinical scenario.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for Elsevier Science
Loading ...
Support Center