Electroencephalography

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Electroencephalography (EEG) - examinations and consultations

Electroencephalography (EEG) – examinations and consultations

Electroencephalography (EEG) is used to analyse brain waves or electric activity, by providing visual, hearing or other stimulation. The principal wave forms are alpha, beta, delta and theta waves. Electroencephalography (EEG) is used to assess the disorders of brain function in the event of various diseases, for instance, seizures of epilepsy and unconsciousness, brain activity disorders after a stroke and in the event of tumours, as well as in order to diagnose other diseases, etc.

Duration of the examination

Approximately 45-60 minutes.

Preparation

Preliminary preparation is required. Please follow the instructions.

Sensations

The examination is painless. Cramps may be provoked in rare cases.

Limitations

There are no limitations. Inform the physician of your health status prior to the examination.

Advantages of the method

A possibility to analyse brain waves or electrical activity, by stimulating them with visual, hearing or other stimuli.

Results

The physician shall prepare the report within two business days.

Diagnostic principles

During the examination, electrodes that consist of small metal discs with a thin wire are applied on the head. The electrodes register electric potentials generated by the activity of brain cells. The examination is reflected in the form of graphic curves on computer screen or as a record. After the examination, the physician shall analyse the record of the electroencephalogram.

Usually, during the examination, the specialist asks the patient to relax in the chair. Registering electrodes are attached to the head of the patient. After the initial registration of brain activity, the examination is performed with various stimuli, for instance, the specialist may ask the patient to breathe deep and fast for three minutes. Stimulation can also be performed with a bright light, etc.

EEG examination is usually performed by a specially trained nurse and experienced medical nurse or a physician.

When the examination is completed, the electrodes will be removed and the electrode paste washed off with warm water. In some cases you will need to wash your head at home again. The physician will inform you of when to restart the use of medicinal products that you discontinued before the examination. Based on your individual situation, your physician may provide additional instructions to you after the examination.

Need for examination

Electroencephalography (EEG) is used to evaluate brain function disorders in the event of the following diseases:

  • epilepsy;
  • seizures of unconsciousness;
  • brain function disorders after a stroke;
  • trauma;
  • tumours;
  • to diagnose other diseases that affect brain activity, for instance, Alzheimer’s disease;
  • behavioural and sleep disorders.

Prior to the examination

  • The physician will explain the procedure of the examination, you will be able to specify information and ask unclear questions that you may have.
  • In the evening before the examination, wash your hair with shampoo, but do not use conditioner.
  • Do not use hair care agents: hairspray, hair oils or hair gel.
  • Inform the physician of all medicinal products and dietary supplements that you are using. Avoid using food or drinks containing caffeine 8 to 12 hours prior to the examination.
  • Avoid fasting in the evening prior to the examination, since low blood sugar level may affect the results.
  • Based on your health status, the physician may ask you to perform other specific preparations for examination.

Risks of the examination

EEG has been in use for years and is considered to be a safe method of examination. The examination does not cause discomfort. The electrodes only register electrical activity of the brain and do not cause any subjectively unpleasant sensations. In rare cases, during the performance of the EEG, the patients experience cramps that are caused by the visual or audial stimulation used during examination. Other risks may be associated with your health status or other diseases, therefore, you may discuss the unclear issues with the physician prior to the examination.

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