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J Am Coll Cardiol. 1986 Feb;7(2):374-82.

Intraoperative two-dimensional echocardiography: new application of an old technique.


Intraoperative two-dimensional echocardiography is a new diagnostic and monitoring technique that provides immediate information, unavailable from routine hemodynamic measurements, on both myocardial and valvular function. The presence and severity of valvular regurgitation can be assessed from the visualized flow pattern of microbubbles generated by an injection of saline solution: reflux flow into the retrograde chamber represents valvular insufficiency. The extent of valvular regurgitation can be determined immediately after conservative valve repair (annuloplasty or commissurotomy) or replacement to avoid the patient's leaving the operating suite with significant but undetected valvular insufficiency. Additionally, intraoperative echocardiography permits rapid evaluation of left ventricular systolic and diastolic volumes and myocardial contractility, thereby facilitating therapeutic interventions in the operating room. It also permits assessment of congenital heart defects and the competency of their repair. Pulsed, continuous and color-flow real time Doppler imaging methods allow further intraoperative definition of stenotic and regurgitant lesions.

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