Skip to main content

Nerve Conduction Study Instructions for Patients



• Eat normally and take your medication as usual on the morning of the test.
• If you are taking a blood thinner, please inform your physician so that we may instruct you on proper timing of the medication.
• Bathe or shower the morning of the test.
• Avoid bath oils or lotions on the morning of the test.
• Wear loose fitting clothing.


A typical nerve conduction study takes 45 minutes to 1 hour. This test is an important tool for diagnosing diseases of the nervous system. You can help ensure the best results if you relax and cooperate with the technicians. Make sure that you ask any questions that you may have about the test before it is performed. Your physician will discuss the results with you.


Q. What are EMG and NCV?
A. These tests are often used in combination to detect nerve and muscle disorders. EMG measures the electrical activity of the muscles. NCV measures the speed and intensity of electrical signals traveling along the nerves.

Q. What do these tests show?
A. EMG and NCV are important diagnostic tools that help determine the cause of muscle weakness, spasms, paralysis, or pain in the arms, hands, legs, or face. They also help determine if the disease involves the spinal cord, nerves, or muscles.

Q. Who performs the testing?
A. A technologist performs the testing and a qualified neurologist interprets the results.

Q. What happens during EMG/NCV testing?
A. Your position during the test will depend upon the area of the body to be tested. For the NCV, two electrodes will be placed in a specific location. They will pick up the electrical signal as it travels along the nerve in that area. A stimulating electrode sends a tiny electrical charge along the nerve. You may feel a tingle or your muscle may twitch. For the EMG, a tiny needle is inserted into the muscle to record the electrical activity of the muscle.

Q. When will the results be available?
A. Results are typically available within 5-7 days. These results will be send to your physician.

photo of The Endocrine Center 

Main Campus

10837 Katy Freeway, Suite 200
Houston, TX 77079
Ph: 713-468-2122
Fax: 713-468-2289


photo of The Endocrine Center 

Greater Heights Campus

1631 N. Loop West Ste. 625
Houston, TX 77008
Ph: 832-649-4370
Fax: 832-218-7402


photo of The Endocrine Center 

Methodist West Campus

18300 Katy Freeway Suite 465
Houston, TX 77094
Ph: 713-973-3470
Fax: 844-873-0032