Echocardiography Laboratory Overview

The Echocardiography Laboratory at Mayo Clinic is a state-of-the-art center, with a tradition of clinical excellence, education and innovation. The teams in the Echocardiography Laboratory at Mayo Clinic perform more than 75,000 outpatient and inpatient echocardiographic studies a year.

Staff in the Echocardiography Laboratory at Mayo Clinic has unique expertise and experience in performing echocardiography studies. Mayo Clinic's campuses in Arizona, Florida and Minnesota each offer an echocardiography laboratory. Staff at Mayo Clinic's campus in Minnesota also performs or reads studies at more than 20 centers throughout the Midwest, including some Mayo Clinic Health System locations.

An echocardiogram is a noninvasive test that uses sound waves (ultrasound) to produce detailed images of the heart's size, structure and function, as well as detailed images of the heart's valves. An echocardiogram may also be used to measure the heart's blood volume and the speed and direction of blood flow through the heart.

You might undergo one or more of the following procedures in the Echocardiography Laboratory, depending on your situation:

  • A test performed on the surface of the chest (transthoracic echocardiogram)
  • A test in which an ultrasound camera is inserted into the esophagus (transesophageal echocardiogram)
  • Stress studies
  • Imaging tests using 2D and 3D echocardiography
  • Complex Doppler studies to check the blood flow and pressures inside the heart, which can eliminate the need for an invasive heart catheterization
  • Blood vessel studies to detect early changes related to atherosclerosis
  • A carotid intima-media thickness test, which helps assess the health of the carotid artery
  • Vascular function tests, including aortic pulse wave velocity and brachial artery reactivity

Your doctor uses these tests results, along with a clinical evaluation, to offer medical care and lifestyle counseling tailored to you.

You might also receive echocardiographic services during complex interventions in the catheterization laboratory (interventional echocardiography) or during open-heart surgery (intraoperative echocardiography).


To make an appointment, you'll need to be referred by your doctor. Not all services may be available at all locations.