By Lisa Marinelli Smith
As the COVID-19 pandemic continues, home has become more than just home. It’s a school, office, restaurant and even a place to receive medical care.
NeuLine Health expands home care options for patients with neurological concerns. By offering at-home ambulatory EEGs, NeuLine Health gathers the same essential data without spending 72-hours in a hospital or epilepsy monitoring unit (EMU).
“Even with the precautions hospitals are taking to keep patients and staff safe from the coronavirus, we find many patients are still reluctant to go,” says Frank Gray III, CEO of NeuLine Health. “Our EEGs can speed up a potential diagnosis because patients can stay in the comfort of their home, avoiding any concerns about the virus.”
What is an EEG?
EEGs, short for electroencephalogram, record the brain’s electrical signals using small electrodes attached to the scalp. EEGs record patients’ brainwaves so neurologists can diagnose a range of conditions. NeuLine also pairs the EEGs with video monitoring for more accurate interpretation.
EEGs are used to evaluate:
- Brain dysfunction due to many conditions
- Brain tumor
- Brain damage from a head injury
- Inflammation of the brain (encephalitis)
- Sleep disorders
Ambulatory EEG at home
In addition to avoiding COVID concerns, planning an at-home ambulatory EEG is much less disruptive. Patients who schedule an inpatient EEG must arrange care for children or others who rely on them at home. They also must bring a friend or family member to stay with them for the 72 hours of testing.
“Going to the hospital for 72 hours is an ordeal not just for the patient but for the patient’s family,” Gray says. “Our goal is to make the process, which can be unnerving to people, the most comfortable it can be for them.”
NeuLine techs spend one to two hours at a patient’s home going over instructions, setting up equipment and arranging electrodes on the scalp. They wear masks and are trained in best practices to reduce the spread of COVID. Techs remain in contact with patients to answer any questions after they leave the home.
Patients are mobile. The device is contained in a small bag equipped with a shoulder strap, which can be easily managed. They can work, take care of children and pets, keep up with limited household tasks, and, of course, sleep in their own bed as opposed to a hospital bed. If needed, they can leave home for short periods.
“Because patients are in their normal environment, we’re able to see how their brain functions more accurately than what might be measured at a hospital where the patient may be under additional stress,” Gray says.
When the test is done, the tech will return to the patient’s home to remove electrodes and take the equipment away. NeuLine’s board-certified neurologist interprets the results and issues a report, typically within 72 hours, of completing the test.
Scheduling an at-home EEG with Neuline
NeuLine works with primary care providers across the U.S. to give patients the opportunity for at-home ambulatory EEGs.
Once a patient is referred to NeuLine, we will contact them to set up the EEG appointment. Because we can schedule an EEG rapidly, we can often shave off several weeks off waiting time that can occur with a hospital EEG. Our techs will also contact the patient to explain more about the procedure and what to expect.
Our NeuLine team looks forward to working with primary care providers and their patients to provide highly valuable, safe care to them.