Neurodiagnostic Technologist - How to Become a Neurodiagnostic Technologist

Neurodiagnostic Technologist

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Neurodiagnostic Technologist Job Description

 

The job of a Neurodiagnostic Technologist is to use specialized equipment to assess and monitor how well a patient’s nervous system is functioning. This helps doctors identify and treat various neurological problems.

A Neurodiagnostic Technologist receives extensive training in neurophysiology. This enables them to identify normal and abnormal electrical activity produces in the central nervous system, including autonomic and peripheral nervous systems.

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Responsibilities

 

The Neurodiagnostic Technologist records electoral patterns throughout these systems to obtain valuable data that the patient’s physician can use to identify and treat conditions such as dizziness, headaches, strokes, seizure disorders and degenerative brain disease.

Neurodiagnostic Technologists can perform tests that help doctors to uncover elusive causes of mental disorders and help doctors make a determination as to whether a patient is “brain-dead.”

Procedures that a Neurodiagnostic Technologist may perform include:

  • Electroencephalograms (EEGs), which are used to assess the presence of brain activity

  • Tracking brain and nerve function with intraoperative neuromonitoring during surgery 

  • Diagnosis of seizures and other disorders through long-term monitoring

  • Polysomnograms, which are used to diagnosis sleep disorders

  • Measuring neurological responses to external stimuli in order to trace electrical pathways

  • Measure the time it takes to send an electrical signal along a specific nerve to a particular muscle using nerve conduction studies

The most common test performed by Neurodiagnostic Technologists is the EEG. The technologist is also responsible for the safety of patients and staff, and for maintaining and calibrating the equipment.

The accuracy of the data and analysis supplied by the Neurodiagnostic Technologist is paramount to the neurologist. This requires the Neurodiagnostic Technologist to possess the knowledge, judgment and critical thinking skills necessary to ensure that the reported results are complete and accurate.

 

Skills

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Monitoring

You will be monitoring/assessing performance of yourself, and patients to make improvements or take corrective action. Sometimes you must monitor patients to see if they are alive or if they are brain dead. Monitoring is one of the most important skills.

Critical Thinking

Must use logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems.

Attention to Detail

Must be careful about detail and thorough in completing work tasks. You will have to monitor patients who have neuro-disorders which are complex and need tons of attention.

Dependability

Must be reliable, responsible, and dependable, and fulfill all your obligations. 

Concern for Others

Must be sensitive to others' needs and feelings and be understanding and helpful on the job. You will work with patients and families who are vulnerable and at rough times in their lives.

Analytical Thinking

Must be able to analyze information and use logic to address work-related issues and problems.

Computers & Electronics

Must have Knowledge of electronic equipment, and computers because you will be using specialty equipment to monitor and track patients.

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Working Conditions

 

As a neurodiagnostic technologist, you will work with patients of all ages. Most procedures performed by Neurodiagnostic technologists are done in labs outfitted with the required equipment needed to conduct neurodiagnostic studies. Potentially, a neurodiagnostic technologist may find employment opportunities in the following locales:

  • Hospitals

  • Physician’s offices

  • Clinics

  • Epilepsy monitoring units

  • Sleep disorder clinics

  • Research institutions

The diagnostic monitoring procedures can last anywhere from an hour or two to prolonged continuous monitoring. While conducting the procedure, the neurodiagnostic technologist is responsible for ensuring an acceptable level of comfort for the patient, answering questions the patient may have about the procedure and help relieve any anxiety that patient may have. The neurodiagnostic technologist is also charged with constantly observing the data being recorded by the specialized neurodiagnostic equipment.

Intraoperative neuromonitoring may be necessary for some patients undergoing certain surgical procedures. In this instance, the neurodiagnostic technologist will be required to monitor the patient’s EEG as the surgical procedure progresses. This provides the surgeon with ongoing real-time information about the patient’s brain activity and/or nerve function.

 


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How to Become a Neurodiagnostic Technologist:

 

To be a neurodiagnostic technologist, you must have a high school diploma and a two-year degree that includes coursework in Physical or Biological Sciences. A training course in neurodiagnostic technology is usually a one to two year program that includes clinical work with patients.

 

1. Graduate from High School 

 

To prepare for a major in neurodiagnostic technology, the following courses and activities are recommended during the high school years:

  • Math

  • Science

  • Biology

  • Language courses 

  • Computer courses 

You should also consider volunteering at a hospital, rehabilitation center or other facility. You’ll be able to gain valuable experience here working with seriously ill people.

Some states are considering requiring licensure requirements for neurodiagnostic technologists, in particular those who perform polysomnographs.

 

2. Earn an Associate's Degree (2 Years)

 

After completing high school, you will need to enroll in an associate's or bachelor's degree program in neurodiagnostic training that is accredited by the Commission on accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs (CAAHEP).

The major you will go into to become an EEG technician is  electroneurodiagnostic technology. This course load includes specialized training in the following:

  • EEG technology

  • Physiology

  • Anatomy

  • Medical terminology 

  • Patient care skills

Core courses focus on the various neurodiagnostic procedures and on clinical work obtained through an internship, laboratory session or other training activity.

Advanced certificate programs are available if you have already earned an associate's degree in another area. These programs allow you to specialize and train in clinical processes and EEG fundamentals.  s.

 

3. Earn the Required Certification

 

A student has four possible pathways open to become eligible to take the EEG credentialing exam:

  1. Enroll in a neurodiagnostic program accredited by the Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs (CAAHEP) for a period of about six months.

  2. Complete a formal Neurodiagnostic education program that is recognized by the American Board of Registration of Electroencephalographic and Evoked Potential Technologists (ABRET), along with documentation of 100 EEGs.

  3. Be employed in a Neurodiagnostics position while holding an Associate Degree or Registered Polysomnographic Technologist (RPGST) credential. In addition, have one year of clinical EEG experience and documentation of 150 EEGs post-experience and 30 EEG ASET-CEUs.

  4. Be employed in Neurodiagnostics and have two years of clinical EEG experience, along with documentation of 60 EEG ASET-CEUs and200 EEGs post-experience and.

  5. Neurodiagnostic technologists must also hold a current CPR/basic cardiac life support (BCLS) certification to take the exams. 

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Salary Outlook

Title Company Location Posted
12.05.2016
Here at WakeMed, the Neurodiagnostic Technologist provides neurological services with minimal supervision to inpatients and outpatients of neonatal, pediatric and adult age groups. Neurological services are completed through the application of...
12.05.2016
- NEURODIAGNOSTIC TECHNOLOGIST I - PER DIEM - CLINICAL NEUROPHYSIOLOGY LAB (OTH01J91) Job Description NEURODIAGNOSTIC TECHNOLOGIST I - PER DIEM - CLINICAL NEUROPHYSIOLOGY LAB-OTH01J91 Description POSITION: Neurodiagnostic Tech 1 Per Diem...
12.05.2016
- NEURODIAGNOSTIC TECHNOLOGIST II PER DIEM-SLEEP DISORDERS PROGRAM (TEM0002G) Job Description NEURODIAGNOSTIC TECHNOLOGIST II PER DIEM-SLEEP DISORDERS PROGRAM-TEM0002G Description NEURODIAGNOSTIC TECHNOLOGIST II-PER DIEM Location: UNC...
12.05.2016
Responsible for the preparation and performance of various neurodiagnostics modalities as well as associated paperwork supporting those functions. Responsible for the training of department personnel regarding modalities performed. Modalities...
12.05.2016
Performs a minimum of three procedures in the neurodiagnostic lab. These procedures include EEG, EMG, Autonomic testing, Evoke Potentials, OR Monitoring, or assisting with BOTOX treatments. May assist in the training of other technicians.
12.05.2016
Performs a minimum of three procedures in the neurodiagnostic lab. These procedures include EEG, EMG, Autonomic testing, Evoke Potentials, OR Monitoring, or assisting with BOTOX treatments. May assist in the training of other technicians.
12.05.2016
Performs a minimum of three procedures in the neurodiagnostic lab. These procedures include EEG, EMG, Autonomic testing, Evoke Potentials, OR Monitoring, or assisting with BOTOX treatments. May assist in the training of other technicians.
12.05.2016
Performs a minimum of three procedures in the neurodiagnostic lab. These procedures include EEG, EMG, Autonomic testing, Evoke Potentials, OR Monitoring, or assisting with BOTOX treatments. May assist in the training of other technicians.
12.05.2016
Under a physician's order, administers tests relating to sleep disorders in outpatients ranging in ages from 5 to adult. Responsible for administering and scoring polysomnographs, MSLTs, and CPAP titrations. Supports and implements patient...
  1. Neurodiagnostic Technologist III (CNIM-IOM) ** (Future Openings) Raleigh, NC WakeMed Health & Hospitals
    Here at WakeMed, the Neurodiagnostic Technologist provides neurological services with minimal supervision to inpatients and outpatients of neonatal, pediatric and adult age groups. Neurological services are completed through the application of...
  2. NEURODIAGNOSTIC TECHNOLOGIST I - PER DIEM - CLINICAL NEUROPHYSIOLOGY LAB Chapel Hill, NC UNC Health Care
    - NEURODIAGNOSTIC TECHNOLOGIST I - PER DIEM - CLINICAL NEUROPHYSIOLOGY LAB (OTH01J91) Job Description NEURODIAGNOSTIC TECHNOLOGIST I - PER DIEM - CLINICAL NEUROPHYSIOLOGY LAB-OTH01J91 Description POSITION: Neurodiagnostic Tech 1 Per Diem...
  3. NEURODIAGNOSTIC TECHNOLOGIST II PER DIEM-SLEEP DISORDERS PROGRAM Chapel Hill, NC UNC Health Care
    - NEURODIAGNOSTIC TECHNOLOGIST II PER DIEM-SLEEP DISORDERS PROGRAM (TEM0002G) Job Description NEURODIAGNOSTIC TECHNOLOGIST II PER DIEM-SLEEP DISORDERS PROGRAM-TEM0002G Description NEURODIAGNOSTIC TECHNOLOGIST II-PER DIEM Location: UNC...
  4. Neurodiagnostic Technologist St. Cloud, MN CentraCare Health
    Responsible for the preparation and performance of various neurodiagnostics modalities as well as associated paperwork supporting those functions. Responsible for the training of department personnel regarding modalities performed. Modalities...
  5. NEURODIAGNOSTIC TECHNOLOGIST, NEURODIAGNOSTIC CENTER Worcester, MA UMass Memorial Medical Center
    Performs a minimum of three procedures in the neurodiagnostic lab. These procedures include EEG, EMG, Autonomic testing, Evoke Potentials, OR Monitoring, or assisting with BOTOX treatments. May assist in the training of other technicians.
  6. NEURODIAGNOSTIC TECHNOLOGIST, NEURODIAGNOSTIC CENTER Worcester, MA UMass Memorial Medical Center
    Performs a minimum of three procedures in the neurodiagnostic lab. These procedures include EEG, EMG, Autonomic testing, Evoke Potentials, OR Monitoring, or assisting with BOTOX treatments. May assist in the training of other technicians.
  7. NEURODIAGNOSTIC TECHNOLOGIST, NEURODIAGNOSTIC CENTER Leominster, MA HealthAlliance Hospital
    Performs a minimum of three procedures in the neurodiagnostic lab. These procedures include EEG, EMG, Autonomic testing, Evoke Potentials, OR Monitoring, or assisting with BOTOX treatments. May assist in the training of other technicians.
  8. NEURODIAGNOSTIC TECHNOLOGIST, NEURODIAGNOSTIC CENTER Leominster, MA HealthAlliance Hospital
    Performs a minimum of three procedures in the neurodiagnostic lab. These procedures include EEG, EMG, Autonomic testing, Evoke Potentials, OR Monitoring, or assisting with BOTOX treatments. May assist in the training of other technicians.
  9. Polysomnography Tech St. Cloud, MN CentraCare Health
    Under a physician's order, administers tests relating to sleep disorders in outpatients ranging in ages from 5 to adult. Responsible for administering and scoring polysomnographs, MSLTs, and CPAP titrations. Supports and implements patient...