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EMG (Electromyography)

An EMG test makes use of needles and small shock waves to assess the function of the body’s muscles and nerves and helps evaluate the origin of numbness, weakness, and tingling symptoms.

Commonly asked questions about EMG:

Patients may undergo one or both of two tests conducted in the EMG clinic: NCS (Nerve Conduction Studies) show how well the body’s electrical signals are traveling to a nerve. For the Needle EMG test, a tiny needle is inserted into several muscles to see if there are any problems. 

The NCS is administered by applying small, electrical shocks to the nerve and recording how the nerve works. During the Needle EMG, a tiny needle is inserted into several muscles to see if there are any problems. The doctor looks at and listens to the electrical signals that travel from the needle to the EMG machine. The tests usually take 20 to 90 minutes.

Patients can use this test to find the cause of unexplained numbness, weakness, and tingling. It also aids in the evaluation of nerve function. 

The electric shocks cause a quick, mild tingling feeling. When the needles are inserted during the second part of the test, there may be a small amount of pain. The vast majority of patients tolerate this test without any difficulty. 

There are no lasting side effects. A new needle is used for each patient, and it is thrown away after the test. 

You can do any of your normal activities, like eating, driving, and exercising, before the tests. Tell the EMG doctor if you are taking aspirin, blood thinners, have a pacemaker, or have hemophilia. Take a bath or shower to remove oil from your skin and refrain from using body lotion the day of the test.