NCS stands for Nerve Conduction Studies and EMG stands for Electromyography. The NCS/EMG test has two parts:

  1. Nerve Conduction Studies (NCS) are used to measure the health of your nerves. Mild electrical stimulation is administered to the skin directly overlaying the nerve. The response is measured by a second set of electrodes applied to the surface of the skin. This impulse produces a visual signal on a computer monitor and when analyzed it can provide information about the condition of the nerve.
  2. An Electromyogram (EMG) measures the electrical activity of muscles at rest and during contraction. Nerves control the muscles in the body by electrical signals (impulses), and these impulses cause the muscles to react in specific ways. Nerve and muscle disorders cause the muscles to react in abnormal ways. During an Electromyography study, a very small pin is inserted in the muscle that helps us evaluate the condition of your muscles.

Measuring the electrical activity in muscles and nerves can help find diseases that damage muscle tissue (such as myopathy and muscular dystrophy) or nerves (such as amyotrophic lateral sclerosis or peripheral neuropathies). EMG test and Nerve Conduction Studies are often done together to provide us with more complete data.

The results of NCS/EMG testing can be an invaluable tool for your doctor to determine various conditions that can affect your nerves and muscles, which will help them manage your care more effectively.

NCS/EMG test is easy, reliable and safe!

How to Prepare for your NCS/EMG test?

  • Do not use any body or hand lotion the day of the test.
  • Let us know if you have a pacemaker or a defibrillator.
  • Make sure that you know the kinds of medications you are taking.
  • Let us know if you are taking aspirin.
physical therapist doing emg test on patient's arm
Diagnostic expert doing an NCS/EMG test on a patient's arm.

Get Ready For Your NCS/EMG test…

Before the Test

Make sure that you bring with you any relevant results of other tests you have done in regards to your condition. Have available the names of medications you are taking as well as your insurance information and any referral you have received from your doctor. Do not use lotion in your arms and legs before you come for the test.

During the Test

Your Physical Therapist will explain to you the details of the testing procedures and all that it entails. You will be comfortable during the test. Make sure that you ask any questions that you may have.

After the Test

Your Physical Therapist will go over the preliminary test findings and how this may alter your physical therapy treatments. The test results will be forwarded to your physician if requested.