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Had MRI scan on Brain, now referred for 'Electrical Studies' - anyone know what's involved?

(16 Posts)
looneytune Sun 07-Feb-10 09:27:37


I started a thread last year about a numb patch of skin I had along with various twinges/pins and needles etc. thread here

I had an MRI of my brain and spine to rule out MS (family history - grandmother). I had this before Christmas and last month got a letter saying all perfectly normal. I then got a letter on Friday saying my brain scan showed something so I'm thinking the other letter was supposed to say my 'spine' MRI was fine.

Anyway, the letter says I have 'a few tiny areas of high signal in the subcortical region' and that due to my family history, they'd like me to have some 'electrical studies at Oxford and further blood tests'.

Anyone have any idea what is involved in 'electrical studies'?????

Any info would be great thanks. Dh and I work together as Registered Childminders and are trying to decide whether or not dh should come with me and we close for the day or have a reduced number of children. Hopefully I'll get more info from the hospital before my appointment but we're just trying to get an idea of what's involved.


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looneytune Sun 07-Feb-10 13:29:51

bump in case anyone has any info

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QueenofWhatever Sun 07-Feb-10 16:00:16

I think it's an EEG. I had one last year, as they wanted to exclude epilepsy. Basically they put a load of gel in your hair and attach electrical pads all over your head (like on a heart monitor) and you just sit there. It's not invasive and it doesn't hurt, but your hair is a right old mess so take a hat you can chuck in the wash!

Mine took less than an hour.

looneytune Sun 07-Feb-10 16:05:44

Thanks for that, thanks for the tip about a hat wink. Pleased it doesn't hurt, when I saw 'electrical' I did have all sorts going through my mind lol. Fingers crossed I get an early or late appointment then maybe I can provide 'some' childcare that day. Still, it's an hour(ish) journey each way.

Did you take anyone with you? Dh really wants to come with me but I'm not sure? Most reason I'd rather he came is so he can drive!! (don't like driving to new places! blush)

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sarah293 Sun 07-Feb-10 16:07:22

Message withdrawn

looneytune Sun 07-Feb-10 16:10:20

Rivan. Sorry to hear you have MS I really don't think I have enough symptoms to be anything serious but they want to rule it out because of my grandma. I've been TRYING to find out what 'high signal in subcortical region' means and I'm none the wiser!! I'll make sure I shave my legs in case it's not just on my head!!! Thanks for that

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sarah293 Sun 07-Feb-10 16:31:52

Message withdrawn

QueenofWhatever Sun 07-Feb-10 19:36:33

I was already an inpatient when I had my EEG, so driving wasn't relevant. But I think you wouldn't have any effects afterwards as it's not invasive or sedative. Hospitals usually have public transport information on their websites, parking is difficult at virtually all hospitals.

The subcortical region is part of the brain (below the cortex if I remember correctly). Our brains are full of electricty; they are made of lots of neurons which talk to each other using electricity and chemicals (that's how anti-depressants work, they boost or inhibit specific chemicals in the neurons). If you have high activity it means that some neurons are firing more than they should, they just want to find out where and why.

careergirl Sun 07-Feb-10 21:24:22

I would think EEG too. Long time ago since I had mine but it wasn't too bad as I remember. I do remember my hair being very sticky and messy afterward though!

snowmash Sun 07-Feb-10 22:11:58

Electrical studies could be a number of things - I'm with Riven though in that it's likely to be evoked potentials (I've had both the muscle and eye ones at Oxford).

sarah293 Mon 08-Feb-10 08:08:34

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looneytune Mon 08-Feb-10 18:36:51

Thanks everyone for taking the time to give me this info I had a letter from the consultant this morning and she worded it this time as 'electrical studies of my nerves' and I think this is an EMG??? Just what comes up when you google it and seems more likely. Hopefully they'll work out why I have the large numb patch of skin on my leg! I'm not sure when the tests will be, guess will be a while of waiting again. In the meantime, I have my bloods being done on Thursday and I have the form so can see EXACTLY what blood tests they are doing.

From the letter the changes (not sure why they use this word as they've never seen my brain before?! confused) are not typical of MS but I guess they want to work out what is going on anyway.

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looneytune Mon 08-Feb-10 20:41:37

Actually, don't think it will be an EMG, think it's a 'nerve conduction study'? Oh well, hopefully I'll know soon enough

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runnervt Mon 08-Feb-10 21:55:50

A nerve conduction study will be the kind of evoked potentials tests Riven described. The eye tests involve stimulating with patterns or flashes of light and recording how long it takes the signals to reach the visual bit of your brain. The muscle tests involved an electrical stimulus and then recording how long the signal takes to travel along the nerve.

looneytune Thu 11-Feb-10 23:15:32

Thanks runner. No idea how long I will have to wait for the appointment but had my bloods done today (nearly passed out, not good with blood and was rather shocked at 9 vials of the stuff!!!). Guess it's a waiting game now.

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Hammies1 Fri 30-Aug-19 01:11:12

Any update on your numb patch looney tune

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