Neurodiagnostics

Neurodiagnostics is a field of science devoted to recording and studying the electrical activity of the brain, spinal cord, nerves and muscles.

Procedures & preparations

Electromyogram (EMG) / Nerve Conduction Studies (NCS)

EMG is a needle technique for evaluating and recording the electrical activity produced by the muscles. NCS is used to evaluate the function of the nerves.

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Why is it done?
To see if the muscles and nerves in the body are working properly and to assess symptoms such as numbness, tingling and weakness.

The procedure
During the test, the technologist will place electrodes on the skin and electrical impulses will be sent from the electrodes through the muscle underneath. The patient will feel little to no discomfort.

The neurologist will insert a small needle into one of the patient’s muscles so that a very small wire can record any changes in electrical activity when the patient is moving and at rest. The patient may feel some discomfort.

Preparation
Please do not apply cream, oil or hand sanitizer on the skin or area being tested.

Electroencephalography (EEG)

An EEG is a test used to find problems related to electrical activity of the brain. An EEG tracks and records brain wave patterns. Normal electrical activity in the brain makes a recognizable pattern. Through an EEG, physicians can look for abnormal patterns that indicate seizures and other problems.

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Why is it done?
Most EEG’s are done to diagnose and monitor seizure disorders. Other problems can also be identified by an EEG’s such as, sleep disorders and changes in behaviour, evaluated brain activity after a severe head injury.

The procedure
The patient will be asked to lay on a bed or sit in a chair. The EEG technologist will attach electrodes to different locations on the scalp using adhesive paste. Each electrode is connected to an amplifier and EEG recording machine. The patient will be asked to lie still as movement can alter the results.

The patient will be asked to look at a bright flashing light and breathe a certain way as instructed.

Preparation
The patient’s hair should be clean and free of oils, sprays and conditioner to help the electrodes stick to the scalp. It is recommended that you DO NOT have caffeine before the test. If it is necessary for you to sleep during the EEG, please follow the instructions on the letter received with your appointment notification.

Evoked Potentials (EP)

EP measures the electrical activity of the brain in response to the stimulation of specific nerve pathways.

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Why is it done?
To detect a slowing of electrical signal caused by damage along these pathways.

The procedure
EEG electrodes will be placed on the scalp and EMG electrodes on the skin. The patient will feel little to no discomfort.

Preparation
Please do not apply cream, oil or hand sanitizer on the skin or area being tested (wrists and ankles). Your hair should be clean and free of oils, sprays and conditioner.

How long will the procedure take?

Electromyogram (EMG) 0-90 minutes
Nerve Conduction Studies (NCS)
30-90 minutes
Electroencephalography (EEG)
60 minutes
Evoked Potentials (EP)
30-90 minutes

Contact us

Brampton Civic Hospital
2100 Bovaird Drive East, Brampton, ON
Phone: 905-494-2120 ext. 57607
Kiosk registration - proceed to 2nd level, north building to Cardiac Diagnostics
Etobicoke General Hospital
101 Humber College Boulevard, Etobicoke, ON
Phone: 416-747-3469
Kiosk registration - proceed to lower level (floor 1), west patient tower to Outpatient Diagnostics

You must bring a valid Ontario health card or if this is a work-related injury, bring a WSIB claim number. A referral must be faxed by the ordering physician to Osler prior to the appointment being scheduled.


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