Neurophysiologist

Treat disorders related to problems with nerve cell communication.

Quick Stats


Outlook
Very Good

Salary Range
~ $172,000

Data from U.S. Department of Labor


What do Neurophysiologists do?

All day long, deep beneath the skin, the brain is playing a complicated version of the game “Telephone.” It comes up with a message and shoots it down a long system of nerves, ending in a tiny muscle. If muscle cells get the message, they’ll respond. If they don’t, nothing will happen.

A Neurophysiologist is a bit like a Telephone Lineman, listening in on these conversations and trying to spot areas where the signal is dropped.

As a Neurophysiologist, you meet with patients who have sleeping disorders, seizure issues, or muscles that won’t move. At the beginning of your appointment, you read over the person’s medical history and you perform a quick physical examination.

Minor tests of nerve problems can be performed by your EMG Technician under your direction as a Neurophysiologist. Some patients need more invasive tests, however, and you must perform these tests yourself. Here, you insert a needle into the patient’s skin and zap the muscle with current to see if it moves.

When the testing is complete, you look over the results and determine what’s causing the patient’s symptoms. You tell the patient what you’ve found, and you prescribe medications or therapies that can help them improve. When the appointment is over, you write up a report for the patient’s Doctor describing everything you found.

Some patients need surgical corrections, and you have a role to play here as well. As the Surgeon works, you use sophisticated tools to monitor the health and viability of the nerves in the area. As the surgery progresses, you point out hazards that could crop up, and you keep the Surgeon from slicing important connections.


Should I be a Neurophysiologist?

You should have a doctoral degree or higher and share these traits:
  • Reliable: You can always be counted on to do a good job.
  • Trustworthy: You are known for your personal integrity and honesty.
  • Detail Oriented: You pay close attention to all the little details.

  • How to become a Neurophysiologist

    We recommend at least a Doctoral degree. Start by getting your Bachelor's. Check out these schools offering Neurophysiologist-related education!
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