Electromyography (EMG) Muscle Pain Specialist Doctors NYC

Electromyography-EMG-Muscle-Pain-Specialist-Doctors-NYCA type of muscle test called an electromyography or EMG is offered by the specialists of Manhattan Pain and Sports Associates. This painless test can reveal problems in muscles themselves, as well as in the nerves that transmit motor signals between the muscle and your brain. It’s called electromyography because it relies on an electric pulse, administered through electrodes by the doctors, to measure your response to stimuli.

There are two types of electromyography tests:

  1. Using needle electrodes
  2. Using surface electrodes

With this test your pain management doctor chooses depends on several factors including the location of the muscle to be tested. For needle tests, the doctor sticks tiny needles directly into the muscle. All EMG tests performed by our pain management doctors are quite safe when done properly. The specialists at Manhattan Pain and Sports Associates are experienced in both types of EMG tests.

An electromyography (EMG) test is used to evaluate muscle and nerve activity during contraction. EMGs help diagnose neurological disorders, muscle disease, and nerve abnormalities associated with pain. Our doctors will order this test for various reasons including:

  • Carpal tunnel syndrome
  • Peripheral neuropathy
  • Radiculopathy (pinched nerve roots)
  • Muscle disease

Diagnosing Muscle Pain

Muscle pain symptoms won’t show up on an X-ray and may not even appear on an MRI or ultrasound. So when you visit your pain management specialist in NYC, you may need to undergo an EMG to help your doctor determine the exact cause of your pain or spasms. Only with a correct diagnosis can your doctor provide appropriate treatment for your pain.

Symptoms that may lead your pain management doctor to order an EMG include:

  • Painful muscle cramps
  • Lack of strength in certain muscles
  • Numb muscles, such as when you feel a “pins and needles” sensation
  • Specific pain in your extremities

Electromyography Benefits

An EMG is considered a nerve conduction study because it can detect issues with the nerve pathways that send messages to and from your muscles. Your muscles may be perfectly healthy, but if they receive conflicting information or if the nerve itself is compromised, the muscle may twitch or ache in response. A pain management specialist may conduct an electromyography test to determine whether or not you suffer from:

  • Nerve root impingement, such as from a herniated disc
  • Nerve damage or blocks in your extremities, such as tarsal tunnel syndrome
  • Illnesses that interrupt the muscle-nerve link, such as a neuromuscular disease
  • Muscle-only diseases, such as muscular dystrophy
  • Ailments that interfere with the nerves that control your motor function in either your brain or spinal column, such as polio

What is an EMG

An electromyography test isn’t supposed to be painful, but it can get uncomfortable. Your pain management specialist is testing the very muscles that you’re having problems with. Generally, the test takes less than a half hour, depending on the number and location of the muscles to be tested.

Your pain management doctor will ask you to lie on an exam table, often in a disposable hospital gown. He’ll attach the electrodes as necessary and then run the test. During the test, an electrode sends a small burst of electricity into your muscle, and the equipment measures how long it takes to travel to the other electrodes attached to your body. Your doctor may also test to make sure there is no electrical current when your muscle is resting.

The results of your EMG can tell your pain specialist quite a bit about your current condition. The results can confirm a diagnosis or rule out diseases as the cause of your health issues. Either way, it’s worth some short-term discomfort.

Manhattan Pain and Sports Associates
51 East 25th St, 4th Floor, Ste B
New York, NY 10010
(212) 533-3954


The information on this site is to be used for informational purposes only and is not intended or implied to be a substitute for a pain doctors advice, diagnosis or treatment. It is important to consult a best in class pain management doctor in NYC regarding ANY symptoms or signs of knee, hip, back pain including lower or upper back pain as it may be a sign of a serious illness or condition. A thorough examination should ALWAYS be performed for an accurate diagnosis and pain management treatment plan. Be sure to call our top pain specialist in NYC to schedule a consultation.