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Auditory Brainstem Evoked Potential Test for Treating Nervous System Abnormalities

Submitted on March 27, 2012

What is Auditory Brainstem Evoked Potential Test?

Auditory Brainstem Evoked Potential Test is usually termed as Brainstem Auditory Evoked Response (BAER) Test. Aside from BAEP which is short for brainstem auditory evoked potentials it can also be called Evoked auditory potentials. Yet another name for this type of test is Evoked response audiometry. It essentially involves measurement, where brain wave responses are observed as they are stimulated by means of some kind of clicking sound. These involve minute electrical voltage potentials. The basic objective of this BAEP is to test your body's hearing, that is, the central auditory pathways belonging to your brainstem.

Symptoms for Nervous System Abnormalities

Nervous system abnormalities are typically diagnosed with the help of brain stem auditory evoked response. Also if you appear to suffer from hearing loss, this test will check that. This is particularly done in case of infants whose birth-weight is on the lower side. It could also be used in the diagnosis of neurologic functions. If the results aren't normal, besides hearing loss, it could mean that you have suffered from a stroke or that you have multiple sclerosis. Even in cases of central pontine myelinolysis, this test may be used for diagnosis. This particular condition refers to nerve damage which is brought on by the devastation of what is known as the myelin sheath. This is the layer that coats your body's nerve cells and is found in your brainstem (pons).

Causes

If it appears that you suffer from any of the above mentioned conditions, brain stem auditory evoked potentials may be used. It could also be used to test the neurological functions observed in newly born babies. Auditory Brainstem Evoked Potential Test is simply a diagnostic tool and is used to check on the aforementioned disorders. The causes for these conditions are countless. For instance, central pontine myelinolysis is typically the result of sweeping adjustments in sodium levels present in your system.

Treatment

What typically happens is that you're requested to use either a reclining chair or even a bed. You have to stay still for brain stem auditory evoked potentials to work. You will then have electrodes that are attached to both scalp and earlobes. This is to enable them to test brainwave responses. Earphones are used to transmit sounds like clicking or even tone bursts. The electrodes are then used to record the resulting response of your brainwaves by means of a graph. Often, a hair wash is recommended the night before you go in for your brainstem auditory evoked response test.

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