The EMG is a diagnostic test studying nerve and muscle disorders by recording electrical activity of muscles with an electromyography machine. The nerve conduction study (NCS) measures the rate at which the electrical impulse moves along the nerve. The tests are used to detect muscle disorders, neuromuscular abnormalities, generalized nerve problems, as well as pinching of the nerve in the neck or back. This test can also diagnose a problem in the median nerve at the wrist, otherwise known as carpal tunnel syndrome.
There are generally two parts to the test. The first part includes electrical stimulation (shock) which is applied to the nerves. The sensation is brief and somewhat uncomfortable. The other part involves a very thin needle electrode that is inserted into muscles to listen to and record the muscle activity.
The procedure is normally tolerated without side effects. Occasionally, patients feel areas of soreness or bruising at the needle sites. This can be relieved with gentle icing to the area or a cool cloth. The soreness should go away within a day or two. Medical attention should be sought if this does not improve.
The test takes approximately 30 to 45 minutes. A full report of the results will be sent to your referring physician. Print this information >>