Electroneurodiagnostic technology is the scientific field devoted to the recording and study of electrical activity of the brain and nervous system.
Electroencephalogram (EEG) is a brain wave test. It detects abnormalities in the electrical activity of the brain. This helps diagnose seizure disorders, head injuries, sleep disorders, and causes of unconsciousness.
Portable Video EEG is very helpful in differentiating seizure types, determining seizure frequency and distinguishing non-epileptic from epileptic seizures. Psychogenic seizures are often initially misdiagnosed and treated with medications when more appropriate therapy is warranted.
Simultaneous EEG and video recording have traditionally been confined to the hospital. With better technology we are now able to provide simultaneous EEG and video recordings as an out patient. This allows the physician to obtain high quality monitoring while the patient is in a more comfortable home environment. The length of the recordings may extend until the seizure is captured but is typically done for 72 hours
An EEG does not treat or cure illness, read your mind, give you a shock, or measure your IQ.
A registered technologist performs EEGs. The technologist applies electrodes (small metal disks) to your scalp with an adhesive gel or paste. The gel looks and smells like clear nail polish. The paste is odorless and looks like toothpaste. This is a painless procedure and the gel or paste is easily removed after the test. The electrodes pick up brain electrical activity and carry it by wires to a computer that amplifies the signals and stores them. Later, a trained neurophysiologist interprets these signals. The neurophysiologist sends a report to your doctor who discusses the results with you. This whole process takes about a week.
Preparation for an EEG
The most important part of preparation for your EEG is sleep deprivation. You should get less than half your normal sleep the night before the test because we record a portion of your EEG during natural sleep. Some patients must stay awake all night. Do not sleep during the ride to the hospital.
We do NOT administer sedation.
In addition, you should:
Plan on two hours for the EEG.
Wash your hair either the night before or the morning of the EEG. Do not use grease, hair spray, oils or conditioners.
Eat a normal meal at your usual mealtime before the test. Avoid caffeine, coffee, tea, chocolate, soft drinks, and alcohol for 24 hours prior to the test.
Take your daily medications as prescribed by your physician.
Do not drive to your EEG. Bring someone who can drive you home. It is unsafe for you to drive a vehicle for several hours before and after the test. If you take public transportation you should not travel alone.
Please do not bring children. If your child is having the test, do not bring other children. We do not have facilities for unattended children.