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Neuromuscular Diagnostic Tests and Screenings

Neuromuscular disorders are difficult to diagnose and require careful clinical assessment. Atlantic Health System Neuroscience's Neuromuscular Program specializes in diagnosing neuromuscular disorders using detailed evaluations, including specific blood tests, muscle biopsy, and electromyography (EMG) to identify each patient’s condition and develop the most effective treatment plan.

EMG and Nerve Conduction Studies

EMG, which measures function in peripheral nerves and muscles, is used to evaluate patients with nerve compression (carpal tunnel syndrome), radiculopathies (pinched nerves in the spine), diseases of the nerves (peripheral neuropathies, Lou Gehrig’s disease), disorders of the neuromuscular junction (myasthenia gravis) and muscle diseases such as myositis and muscular dystrophy.

During an EMG, brief electrical impulses are applied to the skin at different sites, and the patient’s responses are recorded electronically. For many patients, the test will require the insertion of a small needle into various sites to record the electrical currents generated by the muscles themselves, without any applied electrical stimulus.

Some nerve disorders, which affect only the smaller peripheral nerve fibers, may be assessed with a nerve conduction study, such as a small skin biopsy.

How to prepare for an EMG:

  • Please wear loose fitting clothing. 
  • Do not wear lotion or extra jewelry.
  • It is okay to take your regularly prescribed medications, including blood thinners, prior to the procedure. You may take pain medication as needed.
  • You will be asked to complete consent forms.
  • You will be asked to change into a gown.
  • The studies will take approximately one hour.
  • You will receive the preliminary results of the testing immediately after the procedure. You can discuss next steps based on the results of the EMG with the doctor who ordered the test.
  • Any ordered imaging/procedure/medication by the neurologist will be preauthorized by the neurologist’s office.
  • Any order made by your primary care physician will need to be completed by that office.
  • Afterwards, you will be escorted to the check-out desk and will receive follow-up instructions and patient education materials. 

Physician services are provided by Atlantic Medical Group.

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Dr. Alderson is a gem! Just as sweet, kind and lovely as she is brilliant! Her entire staff is so nice and helpful and friendly. I wish every doctor I had was as pleasant and easy as going. She really takes her time with you, talks to you and makes sure you feel heard, understood and treats you with compassion. What more could you possibly ask for!

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