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E.E.G. Technician Video: Career Options in EEG Technology

E.E.G. Technician Video: Career Options in EEG Technology Transcript

The activity of the brain can be measured by an electroencephalograph, also known as an EEG. After receiving on the job training, E.E.G. technicians operate these machines, helping doctors to diagnose illnesses and abnormalities in the brain. With additional education, in the form of an associate's degree, an E.E.G. technician may also work in echo cardiology, administering electrocardiograms, or e.k.g.'s, as an EKG technician.

Introduction

Electroencephalographs are scans that measure brain wave activity. Physicians use these tests to help diagnose neurological disorders, like epilepsy or some sleep disorders. They can also be used to determine the severity of brain damage, the state of a patient in a coma and more. Doctors rely on E.E.G. technicians to operate electroencephalograms and to help prepare patients for the procedure. Most E.E.G. technicians receive their training on the job, but an associate's degree may be required for more advanced positions.

Job Duties and Skills

Prior to performing an E.E.G., a technician will meet with a patient and their physician to discuss the patient's medical history and to explain the procedure. The technician applies a series of electrodes to the patient's head and then monitors the recording equipment and the patient for any anomalies. These sessions may take as little as 20 minutes for simple nerve studies or up to 8 hours for a full overnight sleep panel.

After the scan is completed, the E.E.G. technician compiles the results and submits them to a supervising physician or nurse. In some cases, they may be asked to help participate in the diagnostic process by providing observations or other information gathered about the patient during the examination.

E.E.G. technicians should have excellent computer skills in order to be comfortable working with the E.E.G. machine. Many patients are nervous or stressed before undergoing the test and E.E.G. technicians should be able to calm them in order to prevent skewed results.

Training Required

Most employers train E.E.G. technicians on the job. When hiring, they look for candidates who have earned their high school diploma and who have a current cardiopulmonary resuscitation (C.P.R.) certification. Technicians who are trained on the job will be taught only the skills they need to perform their job duties. They will learn only the technology and equipment used by their employer, which can limit career opportunities.

While entry-level technician positions have minimal requirements, more advanced educational and licensing credentials are required to become an E.E.G. technologist. An E.E.G. technologist can provide doctors and nurses with additional help in interpreting test results as well as perform other forms of examinations and diagnostic tests. Associate's degrees in E.E.G. technology are offered by some community colleges. These programs teach students medical terminology and medical record keeping as well as coursework in anatomy, neurology and computer technology.

Career Options

E.E.G. technicians will have limited career opportunities due to the basic level of training they have received. Virtually all will work in a large hospital or private clinic. There is little opportunity for advancement without additional education, training and certification.

E.E.G. technologists, on the other hand, have increased career opportunities. E.E.G. technologists have more responsibilities and can be promoted to management and supervisory positions with experience. Positions in other medical technologies with similar training and certification requirements, including radiology or echo cardiology are possible. Some E.E.G. technologists may have the opportunity to train others or to work in the development, testing, installation and repair of E.E.G. machines and other diagnostic equipment.

Sources

http://www.webmd.com/epilepsy/electroencephalogram-eeg-21508
http://wihealthcareers.org/Career_occ_view.cfm?o_id=67
http://www.latimes.com/classified/jobs/counselor/2004/la-counselor-090304,0,116227.htmlstory

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