We evaluated the feasibility and clinical utility of transesophageal echocardiography (TEE) in the early management of ischemic stroke. TEE was performed in consecutive patients with acute cerebral ischemia within 48 hours of symptoms onset. The data were analyzed by age (<55 vs <55 years), and the baseline stroke etiology was classified (determined vs undetermined). TEE was feasible in 660 (61%) of 1,080 patients. Left atrial abnormalities and complicated aortic plaques prevailed in older patients (p <0.05), irrespective of the stroke etiology. A patent foramen ovale prevailed in younger patients (p <0.05) but even in older patients was present in 13% of the determined and 31% of the undetermined stroke subgroups. Overall, high-risk and potentially high-risk cardioembolic sources were detected in 47% of the patients, and stroke etiology was consequently reviewed: 40% of the baseline undetermined strokes were reclassified as cardioembolic, and 29% of lacunar, 42% of large artery, and 30% of other determined-cause strokes were reclassified as concurrent etiology. Subsequently, according to the current guidelines, 12% of patients were reassigned from antiplatelet to anticoagulant therapy and 17% of patients were treated with high-dose statins; overall, secondary prevention treatment was modified in 26% of patients. In conclusion, TEE was feasible in about 2/3 of the patients investigated within 48 hours of the index event, contributed to stroke classification in 1/3 of cases, and guided secondary prevention therapy in 1/4 of patients. Therefore, TEE is useful for defining patients' risk profile for stroke recurrence. © 2010 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Feasibility and Clinical Utility of Transesophageal Echocardiography in the Acute Phase of Cerebral Ischemia / DE CASTRO, Stefano; Papetti, Federica; DI ANGELANTONIO, Emanuele; Biljana, Razmovska; Truscelli, Giovanni; Tuderti, Ursula; Puca, Emanuele; Correnti, Agata; Fiorelli, Marco; Prencipe, Massimiliano; Toni, Danilo. - In: THE AMERICAN JOURNAL OF CARDIOLOGY. - ISSN 0002-9149. - STAMPA. - 106:9(2010), pp. 1339-1344. [10.1016/j.amjcard.2010.06.066]