Electroencephalogram (EEG) appointments


How to get an appointment

You can ask your hospital doctor to refer you.

Changing or cancelling your appointment

Phone: 020 7188 3954

Before your appointment

Please do:

  • eat and drink as normal
  • take your usual medicines
  • wear loose clothing
  • make sure your hair is clean
  • if you are having a sleep EEG, go to bed 2 hours later than normal and get up 2 hours earlier than normal

Please don't:

  • do not use hair products or wear hair extensions
  • do not drink any tea, coffee or energy drinks before your test, if you are having a sleep EEG

During your appointment

The test takes up to 90 minutes. 

A clinical physiologist attaches small metal discs called electrodes to your scalp using sticky paste. We place a hair net over the wires. The electrodes attach to a recording computer. This is so the physiologist can measure the electrical activity of your brain.

We ask you to lie down on the bed. When you're comfortable the recording will start. We ask you to close your eyes and relax. A video camera will record you throughout the test.

If you feel drowsy, we'll encourage you to fall asleep. If you're having a sleep EEG, we'll ask you to fall asleep.

We may ask you to breathe deeply for 3 minutes.

We may ask you to look at a lamp which will flash at different speeds for short periods of time. 

After the test, we remove the electrodes and lightly clean your hair to remove the paste. 

After a sleep EEG you may still be sleepy, so we advise you have somebody to help you travel home. 

We're a teaching hospital. Sometimes students or other health professionals will be at your appointment to learn. We'll ask you if you're happy for them to be at your appointment. It will not affect your care if you prefer not to have them there.

After your appointment

We send the results of your test to the person who referred you.

This usually takes 1 to 2 weeks. 

Please contact us if you have any problems.

Last updated: September 2023

Do you have any comments or concerns about your care?

Contact our Patient Advice and Liaison Service (PALS)

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