This page explains what you and your child can expect at your neurophysiology appointment.
How do I get an appointment?
You and your child will be referred to our service by your GP or hospital doctor.
Changing or cancelling your appointment
If you need to change or cancel your child’s appointment for any reason, please call the department on 020 7188 9209.
Please tell us as soon as possible so we can offer the appointment to another patient.
Before your appointment
If your child is coming to have an EEG, you may find it useful to watch our film about having an EEG to help them understand what to expect.
If your child is having a home video EEG, you may find it useful to watch our film about having a home video EEG to help you prepare for what you will need to do when you and your child get home.
Before the appointment, please make sure your child has eaten and taken their usual medication.
Please make sure that your child’s hair is clean and free from hair products, weaves and hair extensions.
Please try not to let your child fall asleep on the journey to the department, especially if they are coming for a sleep EEG.
If you are bringing a baby in for a test, please bring a feed and any comforters to help your baby settle during the test.
If you are bringing a child for a video telemetry test, an epilepsy nurse specialist will call you to carry out a pre-admission telephone assessment before your appointment. We will send you a letter to arrange this.
During your appointment
For a routine or sleep EEG test, you and your child will see a clinical physiologist. The clinical physiologist will take you to the test room and explain what will happen during the test.
Your child’s head will be measured with a measuring tape. We will use a pencil to mark the positions for electrodes to be placed on the surface of the head. Twenty-three electrodes (small discs attached to wires) will be placed on the scalp, secured with sticky tape.
For a sleep EEG test, we will give your child melatonin medication to help them feel sleepy. We will give you and your child an information leaflet about melatonin before the test.
During the EEG test, your child will be asked to take some deep breaths. Your child will also be shown a flashing light.
Routine EEG tests last about 20 minutes. Sleep EEG tests usually last up to an hour. The total appointment, including preparation, lasts between one to one and a half hours.
As we are a teaching hospital, students and visitors may be observing the team. We will always ask your permission for them to observe your appointment.
After your appointment
After the appointment, we will send the test results back to the doctor who referred your child to us.
This doctor will make an appointment with you to discuss the test results.