Evoked Potentials Studies measure and record electrical activity in the brain in response to stimulation of sight, sound, or touch. There are three major tests performed in The NeuroMedical Center’s Neurodiagnostic Lab located on the 4th floor that measure response of stimuli:
- Visual Evoked Responses (VER) – Used to diagnose problems of the optic nerves that affect sight.
- Brainstem Auditory Evoked Responses (BAER) – Used to diagnose hearing ability and can indicate neurological conditions including brain tumors and multiple sclerosis (MS).
- Somatosensory Evoked Responses (SSER) – Used to detect problems with the spinal cord as well as upper and lower extremity issues.
WHAT TO EXPECT:
Once arriving Evoked Potentials Study, you will be asked to lie face up on an exam table. Several electrodes will be applied to your scalp or body.
- During a VER, you will be seated a few feet from a monitor that will flash for several minutes on the screen. You will be asked to look at the monitor, one eye at a time, while a computer records the electrical responses in your brain from the electrodes placed on your scalp.
- During a BAER, you will wear a set of earphones that will deliver a clicking sound to each ear while a computer records the electrical responses in your brain from the electrodes placed on your scalp.
- During a SSER, electrodes will be placed on your arms or legs. You will feel a tingling sensation as a mild electrical stimulus is applied. This is not painful and will not harm you in any way.
The sonographer will record an averaged collection of your brain’s responses. When performed together, the entire series of tests can take up to 3 hours to complete.
BEFORE YOUR EXAM:
- Take medications as directed.
- Shower or bathe, but do not use any powder, lotion, oil, or hair styling products.
- Remove any jewelry, hairpins, eyeglasses, hearing aids, or other metal objects that may interfere with the exam.
AFTER YOUR EXAM:
After undergoing your EPs, you are free to go about your normal routine. The special adhesive used to attach the sensors to your head or body can be washed away in the shower.
The physician who ordered your EPs study will interpret the findings of your test. A full report may take 2-3 days.