A new service for diagnosing epilepsy, seizures and other brain conditions has been added to the health care arsenal of the region on Tuesday.
People from across the Kootenay Boundary will have greater access to electroencephalography (EEG) diagnostic testing with a new regional service at the Castlegar and District Community Health Centre.
“Having this enhanced service in Castlegar will allow Interior Health to increase the number of tests done each year in the Kootenay Boundary by approximately 35 per cent. Physicians will be able to diagnose and treat their patients quicker,” said Health Minister Margaret MacDiarmid in a press release.
The service was made possible with an $8,500 donation from the Castlegar and District Hospital Auxiliary Society. Interior Health was able to renovate an area of the health centre to create a regional site for the expanded services.
Interior Health will now provide EEG testing four days every month in Castlegar for all Kootenay Boundary patients.
An EEG is a recording of the electrical activity of the brain, sometimes referred to as a person’s “brain waves.” EEG can also provide valuable information to the health care team for patients with tumors, strokes, developmental delay, unexplained coma and some mental health conditions.
These exams are done by highly sought after specialized technologists. EEGs are ordered through a referral from a patient’s GP or specialist physician.
Interior Health is also trying to schedule and prioritize EEGs to ensure patients in the Kootenay Boundary who have the most urgent needs will receive testing as quickly as possible.