The Particulars: Several organizations support the use of three-dimensional (3D) transesophageal echocardiography (TEE) as an advanced diagnostic application for cardiac surgical patients. Acquiring and interpreting TEE images remains conceptually challenging for trainees.

Data Breakdown: Researchers at Duke University developed a 3D iPad app that allowed trainees in TEE to obtain real-time instruction in obtaining and interpreting high-quality images of the heart and major vessels. Software programs were created to annotate instructional movies based on video acquired using esophageal ultrasound probes. Trainees had the capability to view these movies on their iPads.

Take Home Pearl: An iPad app appears to provide trainees in TEE with an effective portable teaching tool that can be used while performing an examination in real-time in the operating room.