EMG Nerve Conduction Studies Questions and Answers

Cape Fear Physical Medicine and Rehab proudly provides EMG tests and nerve conduction studies to patients from Fayetteville, NC. Call us today for more information, or simply schedule an appointment online! We are conveniently located at 1540 Purdue Dr, Ste. 200, in Fayetteville, NC 28303.

EMG Nerve Conduction Studies Near Me in Fayetteville, NC
EMG Nerve Conduction Studies Near Me in Fayetteville, NC

If you are dealing with unexplained nerve pain or muscle weakness, a nerve conduction study/electromyogram (EMG) may be able to provide you with answers regarding the source of your pain. At Cape Fear Physical Medicine and Rehab, we have physicians who are highly trained in completing these tests. Your doctor may refer you for this test if he/she is concerned you may have nerve injury or damage or a muscle disorder.

What Is an EMG / nerve conduction study?

This test measures the electrical activity of your nerves and their interaction with your muscles. Nerves communicate with muscles to “tell them” to contract by sending electrical signals. Nerve conduction studies involve a small electrical stimulus (“shock”) to one part of a nerve with measurement of how long it takes to get to another part of the nerve or to a muscle. Your values are compared to normal values to see if there is any slowing of the conduction or if the waveform is smaller than it should be.

The EMG portion of the test consists of a small “pin electrode”, which just looks like a tiny needle. This needle is inserted into different muscles and the doctor interprets the electrical wave forms of the muscle on a screen. There are no more “shocks” occurring. The muscle is tested when it’s relaxed and then you will be asked to contract that specific muscle and the wave forms are evaluated again.

Based on how many nerves or muscles are being tested, this test generally takes between 30-45 minutes.

You can take any of your usual medications and you can eat prior to the test. If you wear lotion, we ask that you don’t put it on the arm or leg that is being tested prior to your appointment.

What does an EMG/nerve conduction test diagnose?

  • Peripheral nerve entrapments (carpal or cubital tunnel; tarsal tunnel; “foot drop” – peroneal/fibular nerve injury)
  • Neuropathy
  • Radiculopathy (pinched nerve in the back or neck)
  • Myopathy (muscle disorder with weakness)
  • Guillain-Barre syndrome
  • Polymyositis
  • Acute or Chronic Inflammatory Demyelinating Polyneuropathy
  • Nerve injuries from trauma or fractures – can help determine likelihood and prognosis for recovery

The physicians who complete these studies at Cape Fear PM&R are board certified in physical medicine and rehabilitation. The only two medical specialties who are trained to complete these studies are physiatrists (Physical Medicine and Rehab) or neurologists.