Two failed TOE/TEE

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Nov 27, 2023
Anyone else had this experience? Had a TOE/TEE in January fail as I couldn’t tolerate it with mild sedation. Second attempt today with anaesthetist in the room and it still failed. I’ve no memory of today’s experience and didn’t even consider it might fail. So frustrated. I was asked if a student nurse / doctor (not sure which) could come talk to me to hear that I don’t remember the experience as apparently it looked fairly traumatic. The skin on my face is all blood shot.

The next attempt requires incubation of the airway so back to waiting again.
When I had a TOE at the Royal Brompton, London, it was done under general anaesthetic. I hadn't asked for it to be done under general anaesthetic but was quite happy that way and I should think they're less likely to fail that way. It meant I was essentially a day patient though.

Hope the next attempt at it for you is a success.
Figured I’d post to wrap this up as my other post goes in a different direction.

Third attempt was successful but distressing. It was booked to happen under GA but they tried sedation again and this time I have memories of trying to get them to stop, being in distress and having my hand moved. Apparently I fought back (and won!) as I managed to pull it out at one point. They were very close to GA but didn’t need it in the end.

I was asked after if I often have trouble swallowing food (I don’t). Been told there is a part of my throat that is incredibly sensitive and was causing the problem.
I had a TOE last October prior to OHS for an AVR. I have since acquired a full copy of all my medical notes.

My notes say the TOE was successful but was poorly tolerated, and the consultant did joke later that I should have been a wrestler. And yet....I have zero recollection. I lay on my side, had the local (spray to throat) and remember the consultant saying "we'll wait a moment for this to take effect". And then I woke up on the ward 5 hours later. Apparently I had 10mg Midazolam, I don't know if I initially had less and they topped it up, or if that was the intial dose. But either way, it did a fantastic job :)


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