Nerve Conduction Studies (NCS)

These studies test the integrity of peripheral nerves. Small sensors (electrodes) are applied to the skin at specific locations to measure the function of a specific peripheral nerve. A stimulator sends an electrical pulse along the nerve which is recorded either directly from the nerve or from muscles contracting under the recording electrodes. You will be warned when to expect the “impulses” which can be uncomfortable but not painful – these are similar to static electricity. These tests measure the velocity (speed) of nerve conduction and the amplitude (strength) of the nerve signal. The detection of changes in velocity and/or amplitudes indicate possible nerve damage arising from a multitude of causes.