Echocardiography is a new noninvasive tool which provides real-time motion visualization of intracardiac structures for the evaluation of anatomy and physiology in patients with congenital heart disease. This paper is presented to acquaint the pediatrician with the utilization and potential of this technique as practiced by pediatric cardiologists. A discussion of principles of physics and instrumentation in echocardiography is followed by a description of normal echocardiographic anatomy. Specific malformations which can be diagnosed reliably by this technique include: hypoplastic left heart syndrome, transposition of the great vessels, tetralogy of Fallot, idiopathic hypertrophic subaortic stenosis, mitral valve prolapse, and pericardial effusion. In addition, the evaluation of patients with atrial septal defects and patent ductus arteriosus is discussed. New advances in instrumentation and their potential impact in pediatric cardiology are reviewed.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health