To document the safety and efficacy of an anaesthetic technique in paediatric patients undergoing transoesophageal echocardiography (TOE).
Prospective descriptive study performed in a children's hospital with all patients undergoing TOE. Topical analgesia of the pharynx was achieved with lidocaine. Anaesthesia was induced with midazolam (25 microg.kg-1), fentanyl (1 microg.kg-1), and propofol (0.5-1 mg.kg-1), followed by a continuous infusion of propofol (5-10 mg.kg-1.h-1).
Thirty patients are reported. The mean age was 11.4 +/- 5.1 years (range 1-22) and weight 40.5 +/- 22.1 kg (range 10-110). All the patients tolerated the procedure well. Two patients experienced brief oxygen desaturations during induction, 10 patients coughed during the procedure, and six patients had significant muscle activity requiring supplemental doses of propofol. None of the patients experienced nausea or vomiting.
We conclude that our anaesthetic technique in spontaneously breathing paediatric patients during TOE is effective and appears to be safe in children with heart disease.