Can An Abnormal EEG Mean Nothing?

What test shows brain activity?

An EEG is a test that detects abnormalities in your brain waves, or in the electrical activity of your brain.

During the procedure, electrodes consisting of small metal discs with thin wires are pasted onto your scalp.

The electrodes detect tiny electrical charges that result from the activity of your brain cells..

What causes slow brain activity?

Several different etiologies may provoke generalized background slowing, including the effects of sedative centrally acting medications, neurodegenerative disorders, a widespread neurodevelopmental process, hydrocephalus, metabolic or toxic encephalopathy, CNS infectious disorders such as meningoencephalitis, or even a …

Can doctors tell if you had a seizure?

Diagnosing the seizure To make a diagnosis, your doctor may perform or order: Complete neurological exam. Blood work and other lab tests to look for abnormalities in blood glucose and other factors. Imaging tests of the brain, such as an MRI or CT scan.

What does a seizure feel like?

Focal seizures without loss of consciousness. These seizures may alter emotions or change the way things look, smell, feel, taste or sound, but you don’t lose consciousness. You may suddenly feel angry, joyful or sad. Some people have nausea or unusual feelings that are difficult to describe.

What are the possible causes for an abnormal EEG?

Abnormal results on an EEG test may be due to:Abnormal bleeding (hemorrhage)An abnormal structure in the brain (such as a brain tumor)Tissue death due to a blockage in blood flow (cerebral infarction)Drug or alcohol abuse.Head injury.Migraines (in some cases)Seizure disorder (such as epilepsy)More items…•

What does abnormal brain activity mean?

Abnormal electrical activity in the brain can cause seizures. When a person has repeated seizures, this condition is called epilepsy. Diagnosis and treatment of these disorders often requires consultation with a neurologist.

What does a normal EEG rule out?

A normal EEG does not mean that you did not have a seizure. Approximately one-half of all EEGs done for patients with seizures are interpreted as normal. Even someone who has seizures every week can have a normal EEG test. This is because the EEG only shows brain activity during the time of the test.

What does an EEG look like with seizures?

When a seizure happens during an EEG, the normal pattern of brain activity that is seen on the EEG reading changes, and different brain activity can be seen. In focal seizures the change in brain activity can be seen only on the electrodes on the part of the brain the seizure is happening in.

What is a drawback of having an EEG scan?

One of the big disadvantages of EEG/ERP is that it’s hard to figure out where in the brain the electrical activity is coming from. By putting lots of electrodes all over the scalp (in our lab we use 64 or 128 electrodes), we can get some idea of where the ERP components are strongest.

Can you have an abnormal EEG without having epilepsy?

Although most patients do not have seizures when the EEG is being recorded, they often have abnormal brain activity in the EEG (spikes or sharp waves) that indicates they have a tendency to have seizures.

Can EEG be wrong?

Yes, EEG can be bad for you. The consequences of being misdiagnosed with epilepsy are obvious and serious [9]. When the diagnosis is based largely on an abnormal EEG, no amount of subsequent normal EEGs will ‘cancel’ the previous abnormal one, and the wrong diagnosis is very difficult to undo.

Can an EEG detect mental illness?

Electroencephalography, or EEG, technology that measures brain function could encourage earlier diagnoses of common mental and neurological disorders, including autism, ADHD and dementia, according to findings published in The Neurodiagnostic Journal.

What happens if EEG is abnormal?

An abnormal EEG means that there is a problem in an area of brain activity. This can offer a clue in diagnosing various neurological conditions. Read 10 Conditions Diagnosed With an EEG to learn more. EEG testing is one part of making a diagnosis.

What does an abnormal EEG look like?

The electrical impulses in an EEG recording look like wavy lines with peaks and valleys. These lines allow doctors to quickly assess whether there are abnormal patterns. Any irregularities may be a sign of seizures or other brain disorders.

What can an EEG tell you about seizures?

An EEG is of value for diagnosing epilepsy only if it detects patterns typical of epilepsy. If it doesn’t detect the right patterns, you may still have epilepsy and ambulatory monitoring or video EEG may be necessary. EEG can also detect abnormal brain waves after a head injury, stroke, or brain tumor.

Why would a neurologist order an EEG?

Why It’s Done Most EEGs are done to diagnose and monitor seizure disorders. EEGs also can identify causes of other problems, such as sleep disorders and changes in behavior. They’re sometimes used to evaluate brain activity after a severe head injury or before a heart transplant or liver transplant.

What does a spike on an EEG mean?

sharp wavesSpikes or sharp waves are terms commonly seen in EEG reports. If these happen only once in a while or at certain times of day, they may not mean anything. If they happen frequently or are found in specific areas of the brain, it could mean there is potentially an area of seizure activity nearby.

What are the 3 types of seizures?

Tonic, Clonic and Tonic-Clonic (Formerly called Grand Mal) Seizures.