Transoesophagael Echocardiogram (TOE) - British Heart Fou...

British Heart Foundation
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Transoesophagael Echocardiogram (TOE)

Hi Everyone. Has anyone here ever had to have one of these Tests?. Apparently, it is a Probe taking pictures of the Heart inserted through the mouth - Urgh!! Also, does it hurt? Many Thanks.

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If you can get last nights episode of “inside the operating theatre” I believe one of the features was that procedure. The chap having it said “it wasn’t as bad as I thought it would be”. Good luck

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Oh thank you. Will try and have a look later online. I am really not looking forward to this, I can tell you!

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A friend's wife had one. Because you are given sedation she only had vague memories afterwards. You will be fine.

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Thanks Michael. I expect I will be. I'm doing too much thinking about it at the moment, that is my trouble!

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Hi greenlady13, I had one 2 weeks ago. You lie on your left side. A spray is used to numb the throat, the tube is inserted by swallowing which is difficult as you can't feel the swallow when you need to do it. You maybe offered a sediative which I took and makes it a little easier. You are able to talk after. I had to wait for about an hour , then was checked to make sure I could eat and drink. Then sent home. Results came through this week and backs consultants decision to send me to surgery. Hope it goes ok. Often fear of the unknown is worst but, once you ve had it done, it's not so scary the second time.

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I've had it done twice, first time was encouraged to just do it! You can gag a bit, although I managed it ok it was unpleasant! Second years later the spray or sedation was offered. Choose spray as the prefer not to sedate me, It was so much better and they are so supportive if you say how you feel.

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This is what I'm thinking. I have Reflux problems through a Stomach Ulcer, so I will definitely tell them beforehand and thank you. I had to have an Endoscopy years ago and I was quite ill afterwards. They kept me in overnight!

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I too will have to have this done so your explanation was very welcome.

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Yes it is uncomfortable as i wasnt sedated and couldn't relax . My advice is ask if they can give you something to relax! Hope all goes well.

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Take the drugs Green Lady! It's a very simple procedure which is helped enormously if you are relaxed. It's one if those when you wonder what all the fuss was about afterwards! Good luck. X

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Morning!!

I had one of these a couple of years ago at the Royal Brompton

I was sedated and had the spray. All I can remember is it being really uncomfortable when they first put it into my throat then being asked to swallow which was really difficult. Then I don’t remember anything else until it was time for me to get out of the bed!

It’s just not a nice feeling but it was fine other than that.

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I’m guessing you’d prefer we are really honest?

it can be difficult, as it depends on how much you find you can relax. I can’t, though obviously most people (above) do manage it.

I hope it goes really well for you.

In my case they have never managed to get it done, in spite of three tries, once even with a smaller, paediatric system, so they still haven’t got a detailed look at my iffy valve, which they were v keen to see to make a decision on surgery.

They do measure it regularly with a normal, external echo, which, they tell me isn’t quite as good.

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Yes Kristin, I would much prefer people to be honest. When I had that Endoscopy for a Stomach Ulcer a good few years back, they didn't give me any sedation whatsoever and I felt ILL all the way through with gagging, sickness, awful experience. This time I am going to insist on something, preferably if they could knock me right out for it!!.Whether they can do that I really don't know. Thanks so much anyway :)

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I hope it goes really well for you. You now know that you need sedation, after your endoscopy experience..........I’m all for sedation if they can.

Let us know how it goes.

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I will let everyone know. Just the waiting game again now. That's the worse!

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I've had 3 over the course of my AF history. The fear is worse than the procedure, but it's not comfortable. I never found the spray helped (maybe it did, maybe it would have been worse without). The folk doing this job understand people's fears, but I think you'd be within your rights to ask for sedation, though I think they try to avoid that as nothing is without its risks. I had a couple of others under sedation for something entirely different and never knew until I saw the operation report!

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Hi Greenlady, I have had this procedure twice. The 1st time a friends husband said oh you won't need a sedative so I didn't have one and it was an awful experience. Second time I asked for a sedative and didn't feel a thing, in future if I am ever asked about taking a sedative I will say yes please, it is there to help. Good luck

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Thank you Tombob. I am going to insist on sedation. By the time I get there, I think I will be a bag of nerves!

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I had this done a few years ago & I insisted on sedation, so don't remember anything about the procedure. They really didn't want me to have sedation as it's not as straightforward for them but I knew they would never have succeeded if I'd been awake. Be prepared to insist if you feel the fear. There were no after effects but of course, I couldn't drive myself home.

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Do you think it would be a good idea to phone the Hospital and explain how I feel firstly? You or anyone?? I didn't tell the Consultant the other day, just went along with him. There were Medical Students sitting in as well, so I just couldn't bring myself to tell him how I felt about it!! Thanks for your reply anyway.

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If you can get through to the right department (or maybe Consultants secretary) but I didn't tell them beforehand. I mentioned it as soon as I arrived (I don't think they took much notice then!) but as they took me through to start I repeated it & stood my ground, not easy for me faced with officialdom! I do appreciate your concern, until recently taking tablets was a nightmare for me and I have capsules whenever I can. I do hope all goes well for you.

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I agree. I have the Consultant's Secretary on Speed Dial ha ha. Think she is going to be sick of me. She is very nice mind. I just don't want to go overboard with it you know. These Departments are very busy afterall. Haven't had a Date for it yet, but Consultant has it down as Priority so that is something. That might change with more urgent cases though, who knows! 😊

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Sedation now appears to be the default, but if it is not offered insist on having it. It is in fact a relaxant drug similar if not identical to what dentists use for patients with a morbid fear of injections. With this option you will not be aware of the TOE. I had one six weeks ago and my hospital always use the sedation.

Regards, Mike

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I will and thank you Mike.

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When I had a normal echo they told me to ask for a TOE next time I needed Cardioversion. Two jobs, one anaesthetic. But, there are major disadvantages of being unconscious -- you cannot protest! You cannot inform them when the tube catches in your gut. I am someone who suffers from swallowing problems. Food can get stuck and be coughed up even hours later.

The TOE first gave me some coughed bloody sputum which I did not take seriously since it passed in a day or two. (I do take warfarin so tend to be very casual about things like this).

Worse, I developed soreness. The doctor thought it was an acid reflux problem and prescribed strong drugs, and guess what, they stuck in my throat and made it worse! So I stopped that very quickly. So, once again, i did my own research, and I kept careful observations. It took me a few weeks, during which time the soreness went up and down. I eventually concluded it was NOT a problem with too much acid, and that too little was resulting in the Lower Oesophageal Sphincter not closing in time therefore permitting some reflux. But, most of the pain came near the mouth. So, assuming the obvious, that there was irritation, what to be done?

1/ Avoid all irritants, including, to my surprise, chocolate and sugary biscuits etc

2/ Salty biscuits relieved the soreness. The beauty of salt, and the biscuits were sticky enough to stick where it mattered.

3/ Fromage frais, or similar, really soothed, and again the paste was sticky.

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Thank you ALL so very, very, much. I will definitely take that all into consideration. I have terrible reflux problems so I understand exactly what you are all saying. Even sometimes when I take my Tablets I gag and have been sick. Not pleasant at all...!

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I had one the end of last year I didn't have sedation it's a matter of breathing as calmly as possible and thinking of nice things - you tend to gag as they put in the tube I had the spray to semi numb the throat but it wasn't too bad. The staff where I went were very calming and by not having sedation I was able to go home shortly after the consultant gave me the results. Hope all goes well.

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Thank you. I tell you what though I am going to book a Holiday when this lot is over, if I am well enough obviously, so I will think of that and my little Grandson 😊😊 Will remember about the breathing too!

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I had one 2 months ago. I had the sedation and don't remember a thing. For me the only issue was waiting for the sedative to wear off do that I could go home. Throat a little sore but nothing of consequence. Good luck Greenlady13

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Oh thank god. That really has cheered me up. Thank you 😊😊😊

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I don’t even remember that bit! I just remember being told I’m ok to go back to the waiting room! 😂

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Have you been given a date for yours yet?

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No. Not yet. Still waiting!

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I have now. Had a Letter this morning to go on the 6th September. It states, take any normal medication on the day of the Test, do not eat or drink for at least 6 hours before the Appointment time of 9.30am, my throat will be sprayed to make it numb and, if necessary, I can have a mild sedative, which I want, and have to be accompanied. Good thing is though, the Consultant I see is going to do it. Oh and do not use any potentially dangerous tools or domestic appliances or sign any Legal Documents for 24 hours as sedation can have a mild amnesiac effect so, whoppee do (not)!!!

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No munchies in the middle of the night for you then!! And is an iron a dangerous tool or just a domestic appliance??? Easier said than done, but try to put it out of your mind until nearer the time, think of that holiday instead x

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Aww you are great Lezzers and thanks. Oh ironing is definitely out of question as you know lol!!!That has cheered me up again. I had to tell someone, you know what I mean??? I'm going out in a bit anyway to take my Mind of it a bit. Well I remember too, it.was worth my Son phoning the Ombudsman about his Car Insurance. They have now accepted ALL Liability. Pays to complain 😊😊

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Don't forget to take the credit cards shopping with you, im sure they deserve an outing!! Great news about your son, always worthwhile complaining to the ombudsmen as 99 times out of 100 they see in the customers favour which is why most insurers won't let it get that far, plus a referral automatically costs insurers £500 regardless of the decision.

Ps: I've obviously got a one track mind & just assumed that shopping is the only reason for going out!!

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Lol. You're right too, name and shame ALL of these Insurance Companies. If you let them get away with what they state they will rob you if they can. Not saying there are fraudulent claims but this one was genuine. PS: Ended up going to the Beach for a run with my friend, no shopping ha ha, she had an afternoon off from Work. Didn't get back until late so came Home and went straight to bed!!😊

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Ok time to stop thinking about it for a few weeks if poss! Great that your consultant is going to do it himself. He will know exactly what he’s looking for. It was the same with me. I had the spray and the sedative if that helps. I’m a big woos so if I can get through it, anyone can!!

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Yeah you're right. I do feel a bit better that the Consultant is doing it. I'm used to him 😊

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Ok, keep us posted and don’t worry!

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Thank you. I am trying not to worry. Easier said than done sometimes though isn't it?

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Definitely x

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