Vestibular Tests: VEMP
VEMP stands for vestibular evoked myogenic potential and what that means is we stimulate the ear with a loud sound and we measure some sort of muscle response in the body.
There are, typically, two VEMP responses. We have the cervical VEMP which is measured at the neck, and then we have the ocular VEMP which is measured underneath the eyes.
The nerve that leads to the vestibular system, or inner ear, separates into two branches. We have a top branch and a bottom branch of the nerve.
The difference in the VEMP test is when we measure the cervical VEMP; it’s giving us information about the bottom branch of that nerve.
When we measure the ocular VEMP, or the VEMP underneath the eyes, it’s giving us information about the top branch of that nerve.
This is a relatively new test that we do with our patients. The advantage of this test is it tells us how each of the branches of the nerve work. The test is very easy to do and does not induce any dizziness.