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New Member - help with test results ??

Hi, My name is Robert and am a new member here. just a little about my problem, i injured my back in 2007 while at work. had an operation ( lapendectomy (sp*) at L5/S1) in nov 2008. still in a lot of pain daily in my legs and feet and seeing pain management for 3 years now. on medication ( methadone 10mg tablets - 3 tablets every 6 hours for pain ) and just had a test done a month ago with a neurologist and got a copy of the results and have NO clue what they mean. here are what the 2 letters said completely....

Nerve Conduction Study - Lower Extremity

The left peroneal nerve was stimulated 8cm proximal to the exstensor digitorum brevis at the dorsum of the ankle and a 5.1 mv potential was obtained at a distal latency of 4.0 ms. The peroneal nerve was again stimulated over the fibular head proximal to the foot and a 5.0 mv potential was obtained with conduction velocity to the foot of 51 m/s. When the peroneal nerve was stimulated at the popliteal fossa a 5.3 mv potential was obtained acheiving a conduction velocity of 53 m/s across the knee.

The left tibial nerve was stimulated 8cm proximal to the abductor hallicus at the medial tibial malleolus and a 5.4 mv potential was obtained at a distal latency of 3.9 ms. More proximally, the tibial nerve was stimulated at the popliteal fossa and a 5.3 mv potential was obtained with conduction velocity of 56 m/s to the foot.

Tibial and peroneal nerves were stimulated antidromically at the ankle and the tibial F-wave was 42 ms. The peroneal F-wave was absent. The tibial nerve was stimulated again at the popliteal fossa orthodromically and impulses were recorded from the gastrocnemius. The H-reflex was 41 ms.

The sural nerve and superficial peroneal nerve were stimulated over the lateral leg 7 cm proximal to the foot and were normal.

This NCV study is ABNORMAL due to absent peroneal F-wave and slightly prolonged H-reflex which suggests left S1 radiculopathy.

and .....

Electromyography - Lower Extremity

Electromyographic studies were performed of the left lower extremity to better evaluate the lumbosacral roots. Standard muscles were evaluated in the lower extremity and included the vastus lateralis, tibialis anterior, gastrochnemius, and peroneus longus. Motor unit potentials were analyzed with regard to morphology, recruitment, insertional activity and spontaneous discharges so that data regarding acute denervation, chronic denervation, anterior horn cell degeneration and myopathy could be obtained.

this EMG is NORMAL.

ANY help in understanding this is greatly appreciated. i know a doctor should tell me, but i do not see the dr until mar. 11 and i cannot wait 4 weeks to find out cuz it is driving me insane wondering. i am constantly in pain and am hating to take meds daily. thank you


  • dilaurodilauro ConnecticutPosts: 9,859
    Unfortunately, no one on this site is a medical professional, therefore we can not give out advice or opinions on any diagnostic tests, images or reports that you have.

    It is always best to discuss these things with your doctors. Even though you wont be seeing your doctor until March, you could potentially get misleading information. Even if you can not see your doctor until March, I am sure they will take some over the phone questions, especially since you have all the test results in

    The members at Spine-Health can contribute many things, once you and your doctors have identified your problem and have an action plan in place.
    Ron DiLauro Spine-Health System Administrator
    I am not a medical professional. I comment on personal experiences
    You can email me at: rdilauro@veritashealth.com
  • well thank you for such a fast reply...i wasn't looking for any advice just asking if anyone knew what all that stuff meant ?? i only understood NORMAL and ABNORMAL and i was wondering if the results are good, average, bad, etc...i saw normal and it always disturbs me because if i were "normal" i wouldn't be in such pain constantly, i don't know....
  • dilaurodilauro ConnecticutPosts: 9,859
    Normal (as your EMG) means no trouble was found or at least everything was within acceptable limits.

    Abnormal, thats the harder one to decipher. What is really abnormal? It could vary a bit.

    I used to use words like Slight and Moderate to mean that there is a problem, but hopefully through conservative treatments, the condition can be corrected.

    Then when the words Severe pop up, I think of surgery.

    But that is not always the case.

    I've seen hundreds of MRI and MRI reports, many of the words seem to formulate similar results. I have had plenty of EMG's and when they say Normal, I am comfortable. But I couldnt even begin to comment on some of the other wording you included
    Ron DiLauro Spine-Health System Administrator
    I am not a medical professional. I comment on personal experiences
    You can email me at: rdilauro@veritashealth.com
  • Like Ron said, none of us can "tell you what your results mean." But that being said, and I agree "severe" is a word I give attention to. With NCV/EMG though, I would add a few more. Reduced recruitment, decreased latency, abnormal F-waves. The NVC tests nerve 'time' response vis ms (Milla-second) as the information radiates back and forth across the surface nerves. My last NVC, a lot of "no response" - yummy, but I knew that as the areas are numb.

    The EMG is more for the motor nerves as it is testing specifically in the muscles. Having a normal EMG I would take as a good check mark! This test is also confirming that you might have radiculopathy emulating from the S1 nerve root. Your Neurosurgeon will be able to tell you for sure. I hope you find this test wasn't a bad/bad, but a wonderful data piece for your surgeon.

    PCTF C4 - T2, Laminectomies C5, C6 & C7. Severe Palsy left arm/hand.
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