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Neurological Services

Neurological Services

Torrance Memorial Physician Network neurologists are dedicated to providing comprehensive neurological care. We get to know you as an individual and understand the facts of your family life that may have a bearing on your neurological care.

To assistance in your diagnosis and treatment, it may be necessary for our neurologist to conduct one or more of the following services or tests:

Botox Injections for Movement Disorders and Migraines

Torrance Memorial Physician Network neurologists provide skilled injection of Botox® for the treatment of a variety of disorders that result in abnormal postures or movements, and migraines.

Botox® is the brand name of a neurotoxin. Localized injections can help an overactive muscle relax by blocking a neurotransmitter (acetylcholine) that is involved in muscle contraction. Botox® does not permanently deactivate muscles.

The peak effect of Botox® occurs at roughly the 7-10 day mark. Repeat treatments are needed at approximately three-month intervals.

Botox® is injected under the skin or into the muscle using small needles. Depending on the particular indication, sometimes electromyography (EMG) guidance is needed. Patient discomfort is usually mild - in most cases, similar to a flu shot. Some people opt to take Tylenol or a mild sedative prior to the procedure.

Electromyography (EMG)

Electromyography (EMG) is a diagnostic procedure to assess the health of muscles and the nerve cells that control them (motor neurons).

Motor neurons transmit electrical signals that cause muscles to contract. An EMG translates these signals into graphs, sounds or numerical values that a specialist interprets.

An EMG uses tiny devices called electrodes to transmit or detect electrical signals.

During a needle EMG, a needle electrode inserted directly into a muscle records the electrical activity in that muscle.

A nerve conduction study, another part of an EMG, uses electrodes taped to the skin (surface electrodes) to measure the speed and strength of signals traveling between two or more points.

EMG results can reveal nerve dysfunction, muscle dysfunction or problems with nerve-to-muscle signal transmission.

Nerve Conduction Studies (NCV)

A nerve conduction study (NCS), also called a nerve conduction velocity (NCV) test--is a measurement of the speed of conduction of an electrical impulse through a nerve. NCS can determine nerve damage and destruction.

During the test, the nerve is stimulated, usually with surface electrode patches attached to the skin. Two electrodes are placed on the skin over the nerve. One electrode stimulates the nerve with a very mild electrical impulse and the other electrode records it. The resulting electrical activity is recorded by another electrode. This is repeated for each nerve being tested.

The nerve conduction velocity (speed) is then calculated by measuring the distance between electrodes and the time it takes for electrical impulses to travel between electrodes.

A related procedure that may be performed is electromyography (EMG). An EMG measures the electrical activity in muscles and is often performed at the same time as NCS. Both procedures help to detect the presence, location, and extent of diseases that damage the nerves and muscles.

Electroencephalography (EEG)

An electroencephalogram detects abnormalities in the brain waves or electrical activity of the brain. During the procedure, electrodes consisting of small metal discs with thin wires are pasted on the scalp. The electrodes detect tiny electrical charges that result from the activity of the brain cells. The charges are amplified and appear as a graph on a computer screen or as a recording that may be printed out on paper. Your Torrance Memorial Physician Network doctor then interprets the reading.

Lumbar Puncture (LP)

Lumbar puncture, also know as a spinal tap, is performed in your lower back, in the lumbar region. During lumbar puncture, a needle is inserted between two lumbar bones (vertebrae) to remove a sample of cerebrospinal fluid — the fluid that surrounds your brain and spinal cord to protect them from injury.

A lumbar puncture can help diagnose serious infections, such as meningitis; other disorders of the central nervous system, such as Guillain-Barre syndrome and multiple sclerosis; or cancers of the brain or spinal cord. Sometimes doctors use lumbar puncture to inject anesthetic medications or chemotherapy drugs into the cerebrospinal fluid.

Imaging: MRI, CT/CAT and Ultrasound

Our outpatient neurology practice is part of the Torrance Memorial Health System, providing access to Torrance Memorial's Department of Radiology. Torrance Memorial Radiology is the premiere radiology and imaging provider in the South Bay and amongst the best in greater Southern California. They are recognized as leaders in imaging because of their highly trained and specialized radiologists, state-of-the-art imaging equipment and technology, and outstanding support staff. Be rest assured that your neurological imaging needs are being handled by the best in the region at Torrance Memorial.

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To learn more about neurological care available at Torrance Memorial Physician Network, or for referral to a neurologist, call 310-517-7021.

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