Our recent blogs have covered COVID-19 issues related to echocardiography (sonographer safety, TEE safety). This post will cover the recommendations for perioperative TEE safety during COVID-19.
ASE recommends that TEE should be avoided in non-intubated patients and only performed in intubated patients in perioperative situations that warrant a TEE despite the risk.
Collaborate with surgical and support services. Why are you performing the TEE? What clinical information will you learn? How will you use this information? Will surgery be an option, if no, can the TEE be postponed. Consider alternative testing. Etc. Have a plan!
All TEE exams should be postponed or canceled if the results are unlikely to change the clinical care of the patient. Avoid and/or use alternative imaging whenever possible.
Examples of perioperative situations that may warrant a TEE despite the risk:
Let’s all work together to limit unnecessary exposure and practice perioperative TEE safety during COVID-19.