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Health Information For Parents
Electromyogram (EMG) measures the response of muscles and nerves to electrical activity. It’s used to help find conditions that might be causing muscle weakness, including muscular dystrophy and nerve disorders.
Muscles are stimulated by signals from nerve cells called motor neurons. This stimulation causes electrical activity in the muscle, which in turn causes the muscle to contract, or tighten. The muscle contraction itself produces electrical signals.
For the purpose of EMG, a needle electrode is inserted into the muscle (the insertion of the needle might feel similar to an injection). The signal from the muscle is then transmitted from the needle electrode through a wire (or more recently, wirelessly) to a receiver/amplifier, which is connected to a device that displays a readout. The results are either printed on a paper strip or, more commonly, on a computer screen.
EMGs help diagnose three kinds of diseases that interfere with normal muscle contraction:
Results are available immediately but a trained medical specialist, usually neurologist, is needed to analyze and interpret them.
Is your child scheduled to have an ECG? Find out how this test is performed and when you can expect the results.
This video shows what it’s like to have an electrocardiogram (EKG for short).
Getting an EKG doesn’t hurt and it gives doctors important info about how your heart is beating. Watch what happens in this video for kids.
Need to get a blood test? An MRI? These videos show what happens in 10 of the most common medical tests.
Sometimes you need a medical test to give your doctor more information about your health. Find out how 10 common tests are done in these videos for kids.
Scheduled for a hospital stay? Knowing what to expect can make it a little easier.
Muscular dystrophy is a disorder that weakens a person’s muscles over time. People who have the disease can gradually lose the ability to do everyday tasks.
Without bones, muscles, and joints, we couldn’t stand, walk, run, or even sit. The musculoskeletal system supports our bodies, protects our organs from injury, and enables movement.
Is your child scheduled to have an EEG? Find out how this test is done and when you can expect the results.
Note: All information is for educational purposes only. For specific medical advice, diagnoses, and treatment, consult your doctor.
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