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Also known as: Electroneurodiagnostic Technologist
Neurodiagnostic technology assists in diagnosing problems with the brain, nervous system, and sleep habits of humans. Someone in this profession uses complex diagnostic equipment to perform tests that target these three areas of the human body. The neurodiagnostic technologist works in a hospital or outpatient clinic setting. He/she is usually the person who discovers abnormalities that allow the physician to diagnosis and treat a patient’s problems.
A neurodiagnostic technologist is responsible for doing a variety of tests that look at how the brain, nerves, and muscles work. He talks with patients and prepares them for testing by explaining what is going to occur, how it will affect them, and why the results of the testing will assist the patient’s physician. He performs the test then ensures that results are accurate. He recognizes and corrects abnormalities caused by sources other than the patient.
The neurodiagnostic technologist will review, edit, and offer explanation for test results prior to sending them to the physician. He needs to ensure that the information the report relays has value and is easy for the physician to interpret and apply to the patient’s clinical condition. He will need to account for normal variances versus abnormalities in testing results.
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The neurodiagnostic technologist is capable of performing a variety of advanced diagnostic tests. He can perform electroencephalograms that measure electrical activity of the brain. He can perform nerve conduction studies that measure how the brain conducts messages to various nerves throughout the body. He can also do electromyography, which measures the electrical activity of skeletal muscles. He can also do intraoperative monitoring of nerves and muscle responses. These are just a few of the studies that the neurodiagnostic technologist can assist with or perform independently.
Neurodiagnostic technologists can expect to work in a hospital, outpatient clinic, research facility, or sleep study labs. The workspaces are clean but often small. The machinery takes up a large portion of the space leaving a relatively small space for the patient and tech. Work areas cool due to the heat put off by the machinery.
The neurodiagnostic technologist can expect to wear scrubs and a lab coat or jacket. When leaving the area most companies require a lab coat to cover the uniform. Hair will need to be short or pulled back at all times. Body piercings are usually not allowed due to safety reasons. A professional appearance is essential to gaining the trust of patients.