Evoked Potentials Studies
- Visual Evoked Response (VER), also called Visual Evoked Potentials (VEP)
- Brain Auditory Evoked Response (BAER)
- Somatosensory Evoked Response (SSER), also called Somatosensory Evoked Potentials (SSEP or SEP)
What are evoked potentials studies?
Evoked potentials studies measure electrical activity in the brain in response to stimulation of sight (Visual Evoked), sound (Auditory Evoked), or touch (Sensory Evoked).
Your neurologist may have ordered this test to help diagnose nervous system problems and other problems affecting the brain and spinal cord.
The evoked potential studies are considered safe and non-invasive diagnostic testing. The tests cause little discomfort; however, individual sensitivities vary person to person. For SSEPs you may feel painless electrical sensations delivered through the electrodes.
How to prepare for evoked potentials studies?
Preparation includes general hygiene and clean and dry skin in the areas to be tested. Based on your individual care plan, your neurologist may request other specific preparation during your visit when applicable.
Visual Evoked Potentials and BAER Brain Auditory Evoked Response
Kindly wash your hair the night before the test and exclude using conditioner. Avoid using hair spray and hair products for styling the hair. Clean and dry hair helps optimize the procedure.
Brain Auditory Evoked Response
Do not apply lotions, oils or other skin care products on the ear lobes.
Somatosensory Evoked Potentials of arms and hands (upper extremities)
Do not apply any lotions, oils or other skin care products to the wrist area or other locations discussed during your visit.
Somatosensory Evoked Potentials of legs and feet (lower extremities)
Do not apply any lotions, oils or other skin care products to the back of the knee or other locations discussed during your visit.
What to expect during evoked potentials studies?
You will be seated in a chair or on an exam bed depending on the test. You may be asked to lie down for specific testing. Recording electrodes will be placed in areas of the body, such as the scalp, ear lobes, back of knee and wrist area. These tests can take up to an hour or more depending on your specific condition and test.