The impact of pre-operative focused transthoracic echocardiography in emergency non-cardiac surgery patients with known or risk of cardiac disease
Canty DJ et al. – Pre–operative focused transthoracic echocardiography in patients admitted for emergency surgery and with known cardiac disease or suspected to be at risk of cardiac disease frequently alters diagnosis and management.
This prospective observational study investigated the effect of focused transthoracic echocardiography in 99 patients who had suspected cardiac disease or were ≥65years old, and were scheduled for emergency non-cardiac surgery.
The treating anaesthetist completed a diagnosis and management plan before and after transthoracic echocardiography, which was performed by an independent operator.
Clinical examination rated cardiac disease present in 75%; the remainder were asymptomatic.
The cardiac diagnosis was changed in 67% and the management plan in 44% of patients after echocardiography.
Cardiac disease was identified by echocardiography in 64% of patients, which led to a step-up of treatment in 36% (4% delay for cardiology referral, 2% altered surgery, 4% intensive care and 26% intra-operative haemodynamic management changes).
Absence of cardiac disease in 36% resulted in a step-down of treatment in 8% (no referral 3%, intensive care 1% or haemodynamic treatment 4%).
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