If you have experienced acute headaches, seizures, symptoms of a brain tumor, or have suffered a head injury, your doctor may order an EEG test. This test assists the doctor in making a diagnosis of any brain disorder you may have. Here, you will learn how to prepare and what to expect during the EEG.
Preparing for the EEG
There is little that you must do to prepare for an EEG. The only actions really necessary unless otherwise directed by the doctor are:
- Clean hair – wash your hair, but do not use conditioner or styling products. The products could make it difficult for the equipment to stick to your scalp.
- No caffeine – the day of the test, do not drink any caffeine. The caffeine could skew the test results.
- Check medications – talk with your doctor about your daily medications. Often, the doctor will recommend that you take your daily meds, but there are a few meds that could alter the test results.
- Limit sleep – if your EEG requires that you sleep through it, your doctor may recommend that you skip or limit the amount of sleep you get the night before. The more difficult it is for you to sleep through the test, the longer it will take to complete.
During the EEG
Thankfully, an EEG is a painless procedure. During the EEG, you can expect:
- Head measurements – the tech will measure and mark your scalp for exact placement of the electrodes.
- Scalp cleaning – the tech or nurse may use a special soap to clean your scalp to ensure the electrodes receive the recording signal clearly.
- Applying electrodes – the tech places small, round disks on the areas that have been marked. The electrodes have wires connecting them to computer equipment that records the brain waves.
- Relaxation – you will be expected to relax for 45 to 60 minutes for awake testing or up to 3 hours for sleep tests.
After the EEG
After the EEG, the electrodes are removed, and you can continue on with your day as you normally would.
Awaiting the test results can be difficult. Your doctor will contact you when the results are in. In some cases, you will be given the results over the phone, but in other instances, the doctor will require you to come to the office for a conference.
If the results were not good, you will create a treatment plan with your doctor and discuss what you must do to improve the outcome of the diagnosis.
There is no reason to worry about undergoing an EEG at a neurological testing and treatment center. If you have further questions about the test, contact your doctor or the neurological technicians at the center.
For more information, contact Hamza; Mohsen MD or a similar medical professional.