What is Electromyography (EMG) and How Can it Help Me?
When you suffer from pain in your muscles including weakness, tingling, or numbness, it’s important to seek professional help. This will allow you to get on the right track to healing. At Sun City Orthopaedic, we do everything we can to understand your needs, especially those that aren’t always as apparent as let’s say a broken bone. This is where electromyography comes in. Electromyography (EMG) is used to evaluate your nerve compression. Along with Nerve Conduction Velocity (NCV), which tells the nerve it’s being compressed or injured, EMG tests can help determine what’s going with your nerves and help detect any abnormal electrical activity of the muscles.
Here’s how electromyography works and why it can be helpful for you.
A Brief History of Electromyography
Electromyography is a low-risk procedure that is used to test the health of muscles and the nerve cells that control them, known as motor neurons. EMG is linked to the discovery of electricity and how it relates to our bodies when the nerves and muscles produce electricity.
In 1771, Luigi Galvani, an Italian physician, discovered that stimulation of the muscular tissue produced contraction and force. However, this finding was not measured until 1922 when Herbert Gasser and Joseph Erlanger began attempting to record nerve impulses and thus improved the cathode ray oscilloscope. Years later in 1942, the first modern EMG machine was created by Herbert Jasper at McGill University in Montreal, Canada.
How is Electromyography Performed?
Like any other procedure, we begin by cleaning the area the procedure will be performed. We do so by wiping the area using an antiseptic solution. Once we do this, we insert an electrode needle through your skin and into the affected muscle. This electrode needle analyzes your muscle’s electrical activity, which we analyze the wavelengths of. We will have you contract and release your muscle as you do this, so we can get the most accurate information from the procedure.
How Does it Help?
EMG detects if muscle weakness or numbness is caused by a disorder or whether a nerve is injured. This includes the following conditions:
- Nerve disorders such as carpal tunnel or peripheral neuropathies
- Muscle disorders such as dystrophy or polymyositis
- Diseases affecting the nerve and muscle such as myasthenia gravis
- As well as disorders affecting the nerve root, including a herniated disk
Contact Sun City Orthopaedic Today!
At Sun City Ortho, we utilize the best technology, practices, and treatments in order to help you feel better, and this includes utilizing electromyography in order to give you an accurate diagnosis and to find you the best treatment for your needs.
If you believe you’ve sustained an injury or disorder and are in need of treatment, schedule an appointment with us today. We look forward to helping you!