EEG – Electroencephalogram

EEG – Electrencephalogram

What is an Electroencephalogram (EEG)?

  • An Electroencephalogram or EEG is a diagnostic test which examines the “brain waves”, using electrodes placed on the scalp. These electrodes are connected to a computer, which records your brain waves.

Are there different types of EEG studies?

  • We offer 2 different types of EEG:
    • a 20 minute, “routine” EEG
    • a prolonged, 3 or 4 day, “ambulatory” EEG

What is the difference between a “routine” and “ambulatory” EEG?

  • Routine EEG
    • A “routine” EEG is performed in the office, which takes approximately 30-45 minutes to perform.
    • This type of study only records your “brain waves” for about 20 minutes.
  • Ambulatory EEG
    • For an “ambulatory” EEG, the electrodes are connected to your scalp in the office, but we then send you home with these electrodes, along with a small hand-held computer.
    • This will record your brain waves for 3 or 4 full days, while you are leading a “normal life”.
    • Such EEGs are more accurate in that they are able to pick up abnormal brain waves while you are at work or while sleeping.
    • At the end of the 4 days, you will return the equipment to our office, which will then be analyzed and interpreted by Dr. Athni.

Which type of EEG is most ideal?

  • Each type of EEG is used for different purposes.
  • Which EEG is best for you will depend on your individual clinical situation.
  • Dr. Athni will discuss these options with you during your office visit.

How is the EEG procedure performed?

  • An EEG is a painless procedure, which involves attaching numerous electrodes to your scalp. These electrodes are connected to a computer, which will record your “brain waves’ during the duration of the study.
  • These brain wave recordings are reviewed and interpreted by Dr. Athni.
  • A certified EEG technician will attach the electrodes and perform the study, while being overseen by Dr. Athni.

Will an EEG always diagnose a seizure?

  • A normal EEG does NOT mean there is “nothing wrong with you”.
  • It also does NOT absolutely exclude a seizure or any other disease.
  • The results of the EEG are used in conjunction with your clinical symptoms and other diagnostic tests, to make a final diagnosis and conclusion.

How do you prepare for the EEG test?

  • The EEG tech will remind you about your appointment and answer any questions you may during the test.
  • For the test, PLEASE do the following:
      • go to bed at 1 AM, and get up at 5 AM
      • wash your hair in the morning
      • NO hair spray, NO gel, NO mouse, NO oil
      • DO NOT style your hair: NO braids, NO ponytails
      • Wear a button down shirt or blouse
      • NO perfumes or body lotions (you MAY wear deodorant

When will you get the results of the test?

  • After the completion of the test, Dr. Athni will review the recorded “brain waves” and put together an analysis or “report”.
  • This will be reviewed with you on your next office visit.