I'm scheduled for an EMG next Monday and am wondering about pain med's. I currently take Flexeral (muscle relaxant) and Oxycodone (pain killer). I have read that I should not take the muscle relaxant for 6-10 days prior to the test. I can't call the doctor because he comes in to the city I live in to do the testing and the phone # is for scheduling appointments only.
Anyone have any insight???
Hi, I've had a few EMGs, and was never told anything about not taking my meds for any period of time, otherthen not on that day!!
Can you call that # anyway, and tell them that you just want an answer to one question reguarding the test?? Perhaps if they can't answer you, they'll have another # where you can get answers!! Or maybe even call the hospital, asking for the EMG department, and then ask them!!
Hope this helps, let us know how your test goes ok? Take care!!
Thanks for your reply - Outtolunch. Unfortunately we don't have an emg department in our hospital, the doctor comes about 1500 miles once a month. Its my understanding that he even brings the equipment. I'm not too sure! I live in a city with a severe dr. shortage - and this fella comes all the way from Calgary to the city where I live in Ontario. Sad but true, I waited 3 months to have an MRI and have waited 3 months for this appointment. We do not have an Neuro here, or even an Ortho who does spinal stuff. All I get at the number is the option of cancelling the existing appointment. Even my GP can't speak to a person, all that they can do is fax referal requests.
This is what I read online: Tell your doctor if you:
Are taking any medications. Certain medications that act on the nervous system (such as muscle relaxants and anticholinergics) can interfere with electromyography (EMG) results. You may need to stop taking these medications 3 to 6 days prior to having the test.
Have had bleeding problems or are taking medications that thin the blood (such as warfarin or heparin).
Are wearing a pacemaker.
Where abouts in Ontario are you, where you're having such a shortage of drs etc.?? I'm in Ontario too, but never had to wait as long as you have for scans or had a dr come to me for the EMG!
No thanks necessary LOL, I'm here to help anyway that I can! Take care!!
I'm in the Soo, and it's really bad here. We actually had a guy airlifted from an area just east of us into Michigan for emergency surgery two weekends ago cause we have a shortage of Locums. No Gastro (whatevers) to cover weekends even for emergencies. It SUCKS - to see a Neuro I have to drive 3 hrs. Except for the one who comes here once a month - Thats who I see next week.
There is a waiting list of 6 years for a family Doc and a specialist if there is one here is 1 year (with a referal).
If you have been taking the muscle relaxer for awhile, your body is acclimized to it. I would just stop taking it on that day only. That EMG is gonna hurt (just trying to keep it real). You are going to feel it. You have to feel it for it to work. You might want to NOT take anything until it is over, but just on that day.
Your health situation up there sounds terrible, but no worse than most parts of the US. We were told last month that within the next year or so we would not have any OBGYN's in our area, at all. Women are going to have to get midwives or drive 400 miles to have a baby. Insurance is beginning to pay for the midwives because of the shortage.
DO you think I'm going to need someone to drive me home from this? My husband is working out of town and is not able to be with me - so if I may need someone to drive me home, I'll need to make arrangements ???
I know its gona hurt, I'm a bit nervous but I guess I've got to do it! Thanks for the advise.
These are good questions. I hadn't heard of stopping meds before an EMG, but it makes sense.
Moonlight may be confusing an EMG with a discogram. The EMG does not try to reproduce your pain; it just measures nerve function. (The needle goes into muscle areas, not into your spine.) It can be somewhat painful (I've had three!), but usually nowhere near as much as a discogram. In general, I didn't find it too bad. I hope you don't either!
I have to agree that the EMG is painful. My husband is sitting here telling me that it is and he is not much of a big baby. He said that first they poke you with needles and then they test your nerves. He was pretty upset with me that I insisted that he have this test done. You are correct about the discogram being worse, but it is like heat, once you hit 100 degrees, it is all pretty much the same. Pain is pain to me.
They are going to test how your nerves react to the test. You can't trick it. They are looking for pain and reaction.
I was taking Robaxin(muscle relaxer)when i had mine and there was no problem.I was told that it was okay to take all of my meds(anti seizure,oxy contin and the muscle relaxer).The test measures the nerve damage and really does not check anything having to do with the actual muscle itself.But if what you posted regarding what the hospital says you should do is what they want, then I would probably skip the muscle relaxer,but most definitely take the pain meds.I drove myself to and from the test.The pain you feel is just momentary in nature.I do not recall any type of pain carry over after it was done.just hang in there and it will all be over soon.Marcia
11-20-01,placement of hardware for failed fusion
9-22-03,removal of cavernous hemangioma that was inside spinal cord. Neuro damage to L hand L leg and R leg.
Ma, are you a mom?? If so, and have been through childbirth...especially natural childbirth...then you'll make it through the EMG just fine LOL!! It can be painful, but nowhere near as painful as childbirth LOL!! The EMG's little zaps here and there, nothing too serious!! Definitely not as painful as a discogram or childbirth!
You'll get through this just fine!! Just keep reminding yourself that it'll be over soon, and before you know it, it will be!! We'll all be right there with you in spirit ok?? Let us know how you're doing when it's all over, we're always here for you!! Take care!!
Yeah Out2lunch I'm a mom - in fact I'm a Mom of three (hence the name MaO3) I'm so glad I found this board, I had never even heard of an EMG before and what I read online didn't make me feel very confident. I will make it thru this, at least now I know what to expect! I went thru childbirth three times completely natural so If I can get thru that I can get thru anything. It was a longtime ago though and I think I have forgotten how much it hurt. LOL..
Thanks for all your support, I'll let you all know how it goes!
I'm a mom of 3 too LOL, and all were through natural childbirth too!! Funny how similar our lives can be eh? LOL!! It's been awhile for me too, but I think it's much like riding a bike, in that you'll never forget hahaha!!
You certainly will make it through this just fine, and I'm glad that we've been able to help you!! Feel free to contact me anytime ok?? I'll be thinking about you, take care!!
Thats one bike I don't want to ride again LOL. My boys are all teenagers now and I love them to pieces. They have been so great since my back problems really took over my life. They are so helpful and considerate of me its bloody amazing.
Thank you again out2lunch for all your support - thanks everyone. I will keep you posted on my experience and results.