Advances in medicine have come a long way. As far back as 1950, electromyography became a staple in the medical community. Now, EMGs are used every day to monitor electrical activity in the muscles and diagnose conditions that might otherwise go untreated. But what is electromyography, exactly? We’ll cover the basics and illustrate some of the uses that EMG diagnostic testing has for patients worldwide.
For patients experiencing muscle symptoms, your doctor may order an electromyogram. Electromyography can gauge the overall health of your muscles and the neurons that control them. EMGs are common, so don’t worry if your doctor recommends one. But what can you expect when the test is conducted, and how does it work?
Your physician will place several electrodes on your skin near the affected area during the test. These electrodes monitor electrical signals from the muscle and display them on a graph for your doctor to evaluate. Your doctor can then use this data to diagnose neuromuscular abnormalities and recommend a course of treatment.
EMGs come in many different forms, but most electromyography uses two stages to display results. A needle EMG uses a needle electrode placed directly into the muscle to record electrical activity. Your electromyograph may also include a nerve conduction study, which uses surface electrodes to measure a muscular signal traveling between two points.
You might be wondering who benefits from a diagnostic test like this. Patients experiencing muscle pain, muscle weakness, numbness, or tingling may require an EMG to rule out certain disorders. These neuromuscular abnormalities include:
There are multiple reasons you may need electromyography. When this is the case, working with a team of experts can make all the difference in your recovery. For the best results, consider working with the team at the Mid-Maryland Musculoskeletal Institute. Contact us now to make an appointment.