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Why Doctors Choose Ambulatory EEG Monitoring Services

Published 2/20/2024

Neurotech Doctor Considering Options

With a variety of diagnostic tools at their disposal, how do doctors select the most effective tests when evaluating and treating epilepsy and similar conditions? Read on to learn more about the factors that influence these crucial decisions.

A patient’s history and current condition can help to determine the course that will most likely lead to a correct diagnosis. Each diagnostic tool offers specific benefits, which allows doctors to make the most suitable choices for each patient they work with. Often times doctors will partner with an EEG monitoring company to have multiple options that provide the range of services needed.

An ambulatory EEG can be performed outside of a hospital or office, including at a patient’s home, at an assisted living facility, or in another residential or familiar setting. Ambulatory EEG can also offer either continous or intermittent testing and monitoring.

Several factors can lead medical professionals to choose an ambulatory EEG over other, more traditional diagnostic tools.

Monitoring during an epileptic event

The length of time for EEG testing can vary depending on the situation. As an example, a routine EEG might take between 20 and 40 minutes, whereas a prolonged EEG can last for two or more hours. Continuous EEG monitoring provides an even more comprehensive picture of brain activity. This monitoring occurs over a prolonged period of time, often spanning many hours or days, to provide deeper insight into a patient’s medical condition.

Traditional EEG testing may not always capture seizure activity, which can occur in brief moments at any time of day. An ambulatory EEG monitoring company can provide longer term monitoring, which can increase the possibility of capturing abnormal brain activity. This can give doctors more insightful data to work with, ultimately leading to a better understanding of the patient’s needs.

Doctors may decide to use an ambulatory EEG monitoring service for additional evaluation when routine testing provides insufficient information.

Monitoring in the patient’s typical environment

Seizure activity can be triggered by any number of stimuli in a variety of settings. Environmental factors or certain types of activity often serve as triggers, which can lead to inconclusive results from a traditional EEG.

Doctors may choose to utilize an ambulatory EEG monitoring service when a patient primarily encounters triggers in their daily environment, whether at home or work or another location, or perhaps only experiences seizure activity in their sleep. In the latter situation, a doctor may decide an EEG done in the patient’s home may show better results, since patients in a hospital or medical office typically sleep differently than they would in the comfort of their own home.

Results in potentially higher success rates for diagnosis

Given that one EEG test may not fully capture the data needed to make a diagnosis, a patient often needs to undergo multiple EEG tests to paint a full picture of their condition. Ambulatory EEG monitoring services can help alleviate the need for multiple trips to the doctor’s office for testing, as these services chart brain activity over longer periods of time, and allow the patient to remain in a familiar environment. Doctors may opt to utilize ambulatory EEG in order to diagnose a patient correctly, and to recommend the most effective possible treatment.

Reduces patient stress and burden, both physically and financially

Extensive medical testing can place a great deal of stress on the patient and their family, with a lot of unknowns. In addition to anxiety about their health, the patient might have concerns about the financial implications of a barrage of tests or a hospital stay.

If an initial EEG does not provide enough information, the patient may need to undergo additional testing or prolonged EEG monitoring. Depending on the patient’s situation, traveling back and forth to a medical institution may be physically taxing, so doctors may try to minimize this issue.

Ambulatory EEG services can reduce the overall cost of testing, especially when patients would otherwise need to stay in the hospital for a period of time. Even one overnight visit can be costly, let alone multiple night stays. Even for routine EEGs, time considerations can have a financial impact – missing work can cause hardship to a patient, particularly if testing requires multiple office visits. Ambulatory EEGs can help make the evaluation process as easy as possible.

Ambulatory EEG monitoring services can alleviate some of the emotional and financial burden for a patient and their family. The patient remains in a familiar environment, and can continue many or all of their daily activities without significant interruption.

Working with a company that provides ambulatory EEG services can help doctors take some stress off of the patient’s plate. This, coupled with the efficiency that ambulatory EEG testing offers, can improve the overall patient experience.

Advances in technology have made identifying epilepsy and other neurological conditions more efficient, resulting in quicker diagnosis and treatment. When hospitals and medical facilities choose to partner with an ambulatory EEG company such as Neurotech, they are able to enhance and improve the overall patient experience in a cost-effective manner.

If you are part of a hospital network or medical organization and would like more information on ambulatory EEG services, please visit Neurotech’s information portal or contact us to learn how you can partner with Neurotech.