An Electromyography and Why You Might Need It

An electromyography procedure is a test that checks whether your muscles and the nerves that control them perform correctly. A neurologist performs the test and can read the results for you if your primary healthcare provider did not order the test. EMG Germantown can help with detecting any muscle or nerve disorders that you may have.

Conditions that an EMG test can detect

  • Muscular dystrophy
  • Carpal tunnel syndrome
  • Cervical spondylosis  
  • Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis

Types of EMG tests

There are two types of electromyography tests, and they are different depending on the technique they use. They are:

  • Surface EMG (surface electrodes)
  • Intramuscular EMG (needles)

How to prepare for the procedure

Since your neurologist will conduct the procedure, they will instruct you on how to prepare. You can use the following tips to help you prepare for the EMG test.

  • Bathe before the procedure
  • Do not apply oils or lotions to your body
  • Wear loose-fitting clothing
  • Avoid smoking for up to three hours before the procedure
  • Avoid caffeinated drinks for up to three hours before the procedure

What to expect during the procedure

You will change into a hospital gown to make it easier to assess your different test areas. During the surface EMG, your specialist will place surface electrodes on specific muscle groups. Your specialist will instruct you when to move or turn to a different position.

During the intramuscular EMG test, your specialist will use needles to measure and assess how your muscles and correlating nerves work together. Although you will not feel the pain that requires medication, you will experience discomfort and minor bruising where the needles pierce the skin.

After the test, your neurologist can read the results or send them to your primary doctor.


Although the procedure does not require substantial downtime, you can rest for a while. You can expect to experience discomfort after the procedure, especially at the injection sites. The pain or discomfort should be minimal; hence, no need for pain relievers.

Risks and complications

You can expect minor bleeding and discomfort. In rare cases, you can have an infection or nerve injury at the injection site. Another rare risk is a pneumothorax or collapsed lung which might happen if air leaks between your lung and chest wall.

When to see a doctor for an EMG test

When you experience any of the following symptoms, schedule a visit to a neurologist’s office.

  • Muscle weakness
  • Muscle pain or cramping
  • Numbness  
  • Tingling
  • Specific types of limb pain

If you regularly visit your primary healthcare and discuss such symptoms with them, they will ask you to do the test. In such a case, your neurologist will carry out the procedure, but they will not read the results for you. Instead, they will send the results to your doctor, who will read them for you.

If you experience unexplained muscle weakness, pain, or numbness, visit Sleep Services of Maryland for an electromyography test. The qualified and friendly staff will ensure minimal discomfort during the procedure as they check for any muscle or nerve disorders. Call or book an appointment online today.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *