An NCV test, performed here, measures nerve function.
When it comes to quickly delivering effective treatments for brain and spine conditions, it’s crucial to get the correct diagnosis the first time. That’s why the NorthShore Neurological Institute uses only the latest advanced equipment and technology to diagnose our patients. Our highly qualified team is comprised of neurologists, physiatrists and technologists—expert in reading and interpreting neurological exams.
Your nervous system communicates by passing electrical signals between nerve cells to parts of the body, so its function can be tested by recording the electrical activity those nerve cells and muscles produce.
Testing methods can also involve stimulating specific parts of your nervous system, and record the responses. These different types of tests include:
- EEG (electroencephalogram) - Measures your brain’s electrical activity.
- EMG (electromyogram) - Measures your muscles’ electrical activity.
- NCV (nerve conduction velocity) - Measures your nerve function.
- EP (evoked potential) – These tests involve your nervous system’s sensory pathways:
- BAEP (brainstem auditory evoked potential). Test for hearing pathways from your ear to your brainstem.
- VEP (visual evoked potential). Test for vision pathways from your eyes to the visual part of the brain near the back of your head.
- SSEP (somatosensory evoked potential). Test for the sense of touch, movement and pain from one of several nerves in your arms or legs to the sensation part of your brain near the top of your head.
Our Testing Facilities
The Neurological Institute performs all electrophysiological tests in an advanced clinical neurophysiology laboratory, mainly in an outpatient setting under the guidance of our neurology specialists.
We have EEG/sleep laboratories at both Evanston and Glenbrook Hospitals—each with four rooms for neurophysiological testing. The laboratory also provides an intraoperative neurophysiological monitoring service to assist surgeons operating on or near the nervous system. It helps map the location of nervous system structures, to reduce the risk of inadvertent injury to the nervous system during surgery.
Our physiatry team also provides EMG testing for the diagnosis of such physical impairments as numbness or weakness. These can stem from a variety of disorders, including stroke and multiple sclerosis. Physical medicine and rehabilitation specialists work with referring physicians to provide appropriate recommendations and treatment options, including physical, occupational or speech therapies.
Central Nervous System Imaging
Many neurological illnesses can be diagnosed by taking pictures of the brain and spinal cord. This is typically done via magnetic resonance imaging with a brain MRI or spine MRI. Another type of imaging test, the head CT or spine CT, also can be helpful.
A picture of the blood supply from your heart to your brain may also provide useful information. This is done with a cerebral angiogram test.
We advise our patients to pay special attention to all test prep instructions—particularly those designated for pediatric patients. Following pre-test directions will help ensure smooth and successful testing. Specific instructions are available for all tests, and our representatives work with patients individually to answer further questions.
For More Information
Please call 877.570.7020 for more information or to schedule an appointment with one of our specialists.