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Brainstem auditory evoked potentials (BAEPs)

Brain stem signal detection and interpretation

Using audio impulses to assess the performance of the central nervous system

About

Brainstem auditory evoked potential (BAEP), also referred to as brainstem auditory evoked responses (BAERs), is a pain-free test that records the function of a nerve pathway between the ear and the brain. This is done by playing a series of clicks lasting a few minutes through a set of headphones. Your consultant will use this information to assess the performance of your auditory nerve and brainstem function. The whole test takes between 45 minutes and an hour.

Need to know

  • What happens icon plus

    Your consultant will explain every aspect of the test to you and will be able to answer any questions you may have. After taking details of your medical history, several small electrodes will be stuck to your head using a sticky conductive paste. A set of headphones will be placed over your ears and you will hear a series of clicking noises lasting for just a few minutes. The electrodes are taken off using warm water. Any paste left in your hair can be easily washed out. There have been no reported side effects from this pain-free test.
  • How to prepare icon plus

    No special preparation is needed for the test. However, do not apply any hair wax, gel, or hairspray to your hair, and avoid wearing unnecessary accessories such as bulky earrings.
  • Afterwards icon plus

    The results of your brainstem auditory evoked potential test will be analysed by your consultant who will be able to explain the test results to you.
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This content is intended for general information only and does not replace the need for personal advice from a qualified health professional.
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