Acıbadem Comprehensive Spine Center
SPINAL DISORDERS ELECTRODIAGNOSTIC TESTS

Electrodiagnostic Tests

Electrodiagnostic Tests Electrodiagnostic tests are a series of tests in which electromyography and nerve conduction studies are the most commonly performed. Electrodiagnostic tests are utilized in the diagnosis of numerous diseases or injuries which are related to the muscles and nerves. If you have pain in your lower back or neck; numbness and weakness in the arms and legs, then electrodiagnostic tests will help your doctor in defining the problem.

Electromyography (EMG)

Electromyography (EMG), enables recording and analysis of the electrical activity in your muscles. A specialized computer system is used for this purpose. There should be no electrical activity in a healthy muscle during rest. During EMG in order to measure the electrical activity, a thin sterile needle is placed into those muscles of the leg or arm which you complain about. You may feel some type of pain or discomfort during placement of the needle. The doctor performing the procedure first of all wants your muscle to be at rest. Next, the doctor will want you to contract the muscle appropriately for its function. The doctor will examine the shapes of the waves displayed on the computer screen and listen to the sounds. You may experience a brief period of bleeding and sensitivity while the needle is being withdrawn from your muscle.

Nerve conduction study

Nerve conduction study (NCS) is often performed together with EMG to evaluate nerve functions. The doctor performing the test will place a small recording electrode on the skin above your muscles, and gives a stimulus with another electrode. If there is an injury in your nerve, the stimulus sent from the electrode will reach the recording electrode more slowly and weakly. The stimulating electrode generates small electric shocks like from a battery. These electrical impulses do not harm your body.

Which are the diseases that electrodiagnostic tests most commonly performed for the diagnosis of?

Things you should know before and after the test

First of all inform your doctor if you have heart or brain batteries in your body. Pregnancy does not constitute a problem for the tests. These tests can be applied to babies and children also. If you have a disease related to your clotting system or you are using blood thinners you should inform the doctor who will perform the procedure. Your doctor may want to postpone the procedure if you have an infection or skin rashes. Do not apply oily or powdered products to your skin on the day of the test, and if possible do not wear any accessories such as jewelry.

There may be bleeding or sensitivity at the points where the EMG needles were inserted. This sensitivity diminishes within a maximum of few days, and the procedure will not have a long term side effect. The diagnostic report of the test will be given after a period that changes from one laboratory to another.

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