The value of echocardiography in the diagnostic work-up of patients with suspected acute pulmonary embolism
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Echocardiography can be used as a differential diagnostic procedure in the diagnostic workup of patients with clinically suspected pulmonary embolism. If RV pressure overload is ruled out in those patients, mortality from thrombembolism seems to be low irrespective of whether pulmonary embolism is present or absent. If, on the other hand, RV pressure overload is present, the prognosis is worse and is dependent on the presence of arterial hypotension at presentation and a patent foramen ovale. Clinicians no longer insist on definite confirmation of pulmonary embolism by nuclear imaging studies or pulmonary angiography especially if the patient is clinically unstable at presentation. It is, thus, evident that echocardiography has gained an important diagnostic position for the management of patients with suspected pulmonary embolism.
KeywordsPulmonary Embolism Right Ventricular Acute Pulmonary Embolism Pulmonary Angiography Massive Pulmonary Embolism
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