How Much Does a Nerve Conduction Test Cost?
A nerve conduction test is performed as a way to evaluate the ability of electrical conduction of the motor and sensory nerves in the human body. Basically, it measures how fast the nerves can send an electrical signal. This test is normally performed when the symptoms of numbness, tingling and burning sensations in the arms and the legs are experienced, and oftentimes, this test will be recommended if the doctor suspects you have carpal tunnel, nerve abnormalities, a nerve injury, Guillain-Barre Syndrome or myasthenia.
The nerve conduction study, commonly conducted alongside an EMG test, consists of different components which include Motor NCS, Sensory NCS, an F-wave study, and H-reflex study.
The cost of a nerve conduction test will depend on the geographical location, the medical clinic performing the procedure and type of tests being performed.
How much is it?
- On average, the price of a nerve conduction test is going to cost anywhere from $700 to as much as $4,000 if additional tests have to be performed. Most tests will fall in the $500 to $1,300 per extremity.
- If deemed medically necessary, check with your health insurance provider to see if they cover a procedure such as this one. If covered, the patient will only be responsible for the deductible and/or co-pay.
- For example, according to our research, a patient in Tampa Bay, Florida was charged $825 by a local doctor’s office, and this was the price without insurance.
- According to HealthBoards.com, the price for the test can range anywhere from $700 to $800.
- Nextination.com provides an open discussion for individuals who have undergone the examination. The price for the examination ranges anywhere from $800 to $900.
- A medical clinic such as OneCallMedical.com shows that the exam is priced anywhere from $500 to $4,000. The site mentioned that a poorly managed test can cost a lot since the patient has to go back to the facility where the test was performed.
What is going to be included?
- The nerve conduction study, also known as the NCS, is commonly used for those who want to evaluate the function and abilities of the electrical conduction within the human body. This test can diagnose certain diseases that are within the nerves of the body such as carpal tunnel.
- During this test, flat metal disc-like electrodes will be taped to the skin to help stimulate the nerves and record the response. The electrode will then be able to produce an electric pulse over the nerve, recording the activity. It should take about 60 minutes from start to finish to complete the test. In some circumstances, the other side of the body would be tested as well and both sides would be compared to the results. The length of the procedure all depends on how many nerves and muscles need to be tested.
- If you were to have an EMG test done on the same day, the nerve conduction study would be done prior to the EMG.
- According to WebMD, the test is designed to find damage in the peripheral nervous system, which includes all of the nerves that lead away from the brain and spinal cord.
- The complete test will be performed by the physician depending on the type of test that will be performed. The doctor will also evaluate your body and will decide on what to do next depending on the results of the examination. In some cases, you may able to know some of the results right after the case, but in most cases, plan on waiting at least two to four days to receive your results.
- There are many forms of this test. These tests can include a motor, sensory, F-wave or even an h-reflex test. Each test can measure and record the muscles in the limbs.
What are the extra costs?
- If the physician finds anything wrong with the body, medication and treatment may be needed; this can add to the overall cost.
- Additional tests may be required if the first test does not give the desired results.
Tips to know
- Be sure to talk to your doctor before the test begins to let him or her know about the medications you are taking. Some medicine, such as blood thinners, may need to be avoided during the test.
- WebMD states the electrical current is a low voltage and each electrical pulse will be quick.
- Since there is nothing put on your skin, there is no chance of an infection, making the risks almost non existant. Also, the voltage is too low to cause any injury or harm.
How can I save money?
- Always check with your insurance company to see whether they cover the cost for the test. Since this is considered a necessary test, insurance providers may be able to cover up to 70% or more of the cost. Keep in mind that most insurance companies will require this type of test before they approve any surgery related.
- If you do not carry insurance, consider asking the hospital or doctor’s office for a cash discount. Many offices are more than happy to provide a discount if they are paid up in advance.
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