Neurologic Diagnostic Services

The neurology team at Lehigh Valley Health Network (LVHN) provides precise, prompt diagnosis for all types of neurological disorders. We use the latest technology for neurological assessment, including EEG, EMG, an epilepsy monitoring unit and single-fiber EMG, a sensitive test that is not widely available.

Symptoms of neurological disorders often vary from person to person and may resemble symptoms of other conditions. At LVHN, we have the expertise to make a precise diagnosis.

Our neurological care team, including board-certified neurologists, neuro-radiologists and neuro-pathologists, has extensive experience diagnosing these conditions. We perform a comprehensive neurological exam and get you a diagnosis and a customized treatment plan.

Expert diagnosis is the first step to getting the care you need for a neurological condition. 

Neurological disorders can be difficult to diagnose because symptoms such as pain and muscle weakness can result from many different conditions. Our neurological team has a high level of expertise in getting the right diagnosis. Our experience combines with the latest diagnostic technology to get you prompt answers.  

We perform Neurodiagnostic testing in our dedicated neurophysiology laboratory, equipped with the most advanced testing devices as well as in our epilepsy monitoring unit (EMU)

Neurodiagnostic services include:

Electroencephalogram (EEG)

An EEG records the electrical activity of the brain to help diagnose conditions like epilepsy. We attach electrodes to your scalp to measure electrical activity.

Video EEG

  • We may use video EEG monitoring during a seizure to diagnose epilepsy. Video monitoring helps us to compare the behaviors that a person exhibits during a seizure with what is going on in the brain. You may be required to stay in a hospital for several days during video EEG.

Epilepsy monitoring unit

If you are experiencing seizures that are difficult to diagnose, our epilepsy monitoring unit (EMU) provides continuous care to determine the precise cause of seizures and the most effective treatment.

Electromyogram (EMG)

EMG measures the electrical activity of a muscle or group of muscles. It can detect abnormal electrical activity resulting from neuromuscular conditions.  

Single-fiber EMG

  • Our team includes doctors who have the specialized training to use this test, which is not widely available. Single-fiber EMG is the most sensitive test available for diagnosing neuromuscular disorders, especially myasthenia gravis and ALS. It uses a tiny electrode that records the action of a single muscle fiber.

Evoked potential (EP) tests

Evoked potentials record electrical activity in the central nervous system in response to stimulation. Different types of EP can help diagnose conditions related to hearing loss, visual problems, motor function, as well as assess nerve damage caused by injury.

Visual evoked potential (VEP)

  • A visual evoked potential test (VEP) is used to look for problems in the brain or nerves that affect vision. A machine records brain waves related to the nerves that make up the visual pathway.

Brainstem auditory evoked potential (BAEP)

  • A brainstem auditory evoked potential test checks the nerve from the ear to the brainstem using a series of sounds. The brainstem links the spinal cord to the rest of the brain and controls heartbeat, breathing, wakefulness, and messages to and from the brain to other parts of the body.

Somatosensory evoked potential (SSEP)

  • SSEP test uses a small electrical current to stimulate a nerve in the arm or leg and measures how long it takes for this electrical stimulation to reach an end point on the scalp or back. SSEP is a useful, noninvasive means to detect if there is a conduction issue between the peripheral nervous system starting point (arm or leg) and the central nervous system detection point (scalp or spine).

Nerve conduction studies (NCS)

Nerve conduction studies stimulate peripheral nerves to determine nerve damage and help isolate location. You may be prescribed this type of test if you are experiencing symptoms related to peripheral nerves such as, tingling in your extremities (hands, arms, legs, feet), muscle pain or weakness, loss of sensation, or other abnormal movements or sensations.

  • Nerve conduction study – A nerve conduction study (NCS) helps evaluate nerve damage to motor and sensory nerves by recording peripheral nerve response to stimulation. By placing sensors along the peripheral nerve pathway of the arm or leg, it is possible to isolate the location of damage to nerves by recording how long it takes the nerve impulse to travel from the stimulation point to the spinal cord. If the impulse stops before reaching the spinal cord, NCS helps identify where damage has occurred.
  • Repetitive nerve stimulation – To determine if a person has a neuromuscular junction disorder (such as myasthenia gravis, Lambert-Eaton myasthenic syndrome – LEMS, or botulism poisoning) a variation of NCS called repetitive nerve stimulation may be performed. With this test, electrical stimulation is delivered to a peripheral motor nerve several times per second. A physician looks for failure of the muscle to contract during repeated stimulation.

Neuromuscular ultrasound

Neuromuscular ultrasound uses sound waves to visualize and evaluate peripheral nerve entrapment (as with carpal tunnel syndrome), muscular dystrophies and neuromuscular disorders (such as amyotrophic lateral sclerosis – ALS, also known as Lou Gehrig's disease), as well as neural tumors. This imaging technique is often used as a complement to other diagnostic techniques, including EMG and nerve conduction studies.

Neuropsychology

A neuropsychologist provides assessments to evaluate a patient’s ability to think, reason and remember. These tests can help diagnose neurological disorders as well as degenerative brain diseases, such as Alzheimer’s disease. A neuropsychologist might assess:

  • Mental functioning, such as attention span, memory, problem-solving and language and math skills
  • Knowledge of personal and current events and common information, like how to draw a clock face

Surgery for neurological conditions

Our neurosurgeons use advanced techniques and minimally invasive procedures to provide a safe, effective surgery.

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Neurological rehab

Our rehabilitation specialists develop a customized plan to help you manage your symptoms.

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