An electroencephalogram is one of the main diagnostic tests for epilepsy. The EEG detects abnormalities in the brain waves or electrical activity of the brain. Electrodes attached to your scalp detect tiny electrical charges that result from the activity of the brain cells. Your brain cells communicate via electrical impulses and are active at all times. The charges are amplified and appear as a graph on a computer screen or as a recording that may be printed out on paper for your doctor to interpret. When epilepsy is present, seizure activity will appear as rapid spiking waves on the EEG. The test can also be used to diagnose other disorders that influence brain activity.
Electromyography is a diagnostic procedure designed to assess the health of your muscles and the nerve cells that control them. The electromyogram measures activity of muscles both at rest and during contraction. An EMG is done to find diseases that damage muscle tissue, nerves, or the intersections between nerve and muscle. These problems may include a herniated disk, Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS), Carpal Tunnel or Myasthenia Gravis (MG). Nerve and muscle problems cause the muscles to react in abnormal ways. In tandem with a Nerve Conduction Study, which measures the speed at which the nerves are sending electrical signals, these tests can help to reveal nerve dysfunction, muscle dysfunction, or problems with nerve-to-muscle signal transmission.
Polysomnography is a sleep study used to diagnose sleep disorders. This test records your brain waves, oxygen levels, heart rate, and breathing.
It also logs eye and leg movements during the study. If you’ve already been diagnosed with a sleep disorder, polysomnography may be used to help adjust your treatment plan. Polysomnography monitors your sleep stages and cycles to identify if or when your sleep patterns are disrupted and why. Throughout the night, your brain cycles between two phases of sleep: NREM and REM. It is normal to go through four to six sleep cycles per night. Sleep disorders can disturb this natural process. Polysomnography may be used to test for Sleep Apnea, Parasomnias, Narcolepsy, or Chronic Insomnia.