Pediatric Regional Epilepsy Program

Electroencephalogram (EEG) Testing


EEGs can be scheduled in conjunction with your Neurology appointment or separately. To contact the EEG Lab at Main Campus, please call 215-590-2960. Office hours are Monday through Friday, 7:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Routine EEG appointments are offered at all of our satellite locations.

Please see special instructions for the following tests:

What to expect at your routine EEG appointment

Please remember to:

Directions, parking and arrival

If your appointment is at the Wood Building, please park in the Wood Center Garage located off of Civic Center Boulevard. A security officer will be at the parking garage entrance if you have any questions. Take the Wood Center elevators to the 6th floor and follow the signs to The EEG Department, Room 6349.

Please bring your parking ticket with you so it can be validated after your appointment. Our phone number is 215-590-2960. Our department business hours are Monday through Friday, 7:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.

Get directions to a CHOP location. 

Checking in

When you get to the outpatient reception area, check in with the desk staff. At check-in you will sign in your child’s name and then proceed to the EEG department to also notify the EEG staff that you have arrived. You then can take a seat in the waiting area for the outpatient staff to call your child’s name which will begin the registration process. Once registration is completed, you will be handed papers to bring to the EEG lab.

Before the EEG

Your child’s hair and head must be clean. The hair needs to be washed the night before the test. Do not use hair spray, oils, cream rinse or gel after your child’s hair has been washed. The child can eat before the test except for caffeinated food and beverages such as chocolate, soda, tea, coffee approximately 24 hours before the scheduled time of test. If your child still takes naps, please schedule the EEG appointment around the nap time. If your child still takes naps, please do not let him/her take a nap that day or during the ride to the hospital.

It would also be helpful if you wake your child up 1 to 2 hours earlier that morning. It may be helpful if your child fell asleep during the study. Also, please bring your child’s favorite stuffed animal, blanket and an extra bottle to help comfort him/her during the study. Upon completion of the study, his or her hair may be damp (from removing the electrodes) so you may want to bring a hat in the winter months.

During the EEG

The test can take from 45 minutes to 1 ½ hours depending upon cooperation of the child and type of study ordered. You may stay with your child during the procedure. The EEG technologist will make markings with a red (washable) skin crayon on your child’s scalp. Then she/he will clean the red areas and place small suction cups (electrodes) with thin colorful wires on the marked spots. A special paste is used to keep the suction cups in place.

The EEG test is not painful; it’s actually kind of fun for the young child. During the recording, sometimes special procedures are done. Older children may be instructed to breathe deeply through their mouths for 2 to 3 minutes and also to open and close their eyes. Your child will have fun looking at a flashing strobe light during the recording.

Your child might be fearful about the EEG. Our EEG technologists know how to handle children during the test.

If they ask you to remain in the waiting room while the test is in progress, it is because many children are inclined to be more cooperative without their parents present thus a better recording is obtained.

The EEG technologist has been specially trained for this work and will be pleased to answer any questions you may have about the procedure itself, or even about the machine.

The EEG lab will do everything possible to comfort you and your child during your visit to CHOP.

Checking out of EEG

If your child is seeing the Neurologist after your EEG appointment, please go down the hall to the Neurology Department and check in at the front desk. You will receive the EEG results at this visit. If your child is not seeing a neurologist, your child’s EEG results will be faxed to the referring physician that you gave at the time the appointment was made. If you would like an additional doctor to receive the results, please stop at the EEG desk and provide that information to the staff.

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