Neurophysiology

The Walton Centre has a large Neurophysiology department with branches in other hospitals in Liverpool and Warrington.

The department performs diagnostic investigations to aid in the diagnosis and monitoring of adult central and peripheral nervous system disorders and muscle diseases. A wide range of routine and specialist investigations are undertaken including EEG (Electroencephalogram), EMG (Electromyography), nerve conduction studies, Evoked potentials, ambulatory and video telemetry EEG monitoring and intra-operative monitoring.

Routine tests:

Nerve conduction studies and Electromyography (EMG)

These tests are used to assist in the diagnosis and evaluation of peripheral nerves and muscles. Nerve conduction studies may be undertaken on their own or in conjunction with EMG examination depending on the type of symptoms that the patient presents with.

Electroencephalogram (EEG)

An EEG is a recording of the electrical activity of the brain or ‘brainwaves’. It is used to help in the diagnosis of epilepsy.

Evoked potentials

These are tests of brain activity, recorded from the head and neck, in response to stimuli such as flashes of light.


Specialist tests:

Ambulatory EEG

Ambulatory EEG monitoring allows prolonged EEG recording outside the hospital or clinic setting. The prolonged recording increases the chances of detecting abnormalities which may not be seen in a routine EEG which is typically of shorter duration.

Video telemetry EEG

A video telemetry recording involves admission to the hospital for a minimum period of three to five days. The patients are recorded using EEG and video to attempt to capture the events under investigation.  Video telemetry can help to evaluate the site of origin of the seizures within the brain, distinguishing epileptic seizures from non-epileptic seizures and evaluating patients for possible epilepsy surgery.

Intra-operative neurophysiological monitoring

Various techniques including EEG and evoked potentials are used to monitor the nervous system with an aim at reducing the risk of neurological deficits after operations that involve the brain and spinal cord.

Sleep studies

These include multiple sleep latency tests and polysomnography which help to evaluate sleep-related disorders.

 

Staff

Our staff include technically trained clinical physiologists, who carry out the EEGs, nerve conduction studies and evoked potentials. The medical staff include consultant neurophysiologists and specialist trainees, who undertake nerve conduction studies and EMG, as well as reporting the routine EEGs and long term monitoring recordings. The department has a successful training programme for physiologists and specialist registrars.