Our Neuroimaging Services

No one wants to spend hours waiting around for an MRI — especially kids. That's why we're both efficient and flexible in accommodating inpatient, outpatient, and critical care patients. We offer fast turnaround on results, a 24-hour scanner, distraction techniques to settle jittery young patients—such as our Adventure Series of imaging equipment which uses fun-loving characters to guide children on unique, interactive journeys, and the option of anesthesia for MRIs.

Our neuroradiologists are on the cutting edge of developing technology for pediatric neuroimaging. To help provide fast, high-resolution imaging for babies, our physicians developed the first FDA-approved neonatal head coil and are currently developing advanced neuroimaging techniques for pediatric use and pioneering the use of sodium MRI to visualize brain tumors in children.

Types of Neurological Test

At the Brain Care Institute’s pediatric neuroimaging section, we offer a full range of testing options — all using the latest technologies and the lowest possible radiation doses in order to provide the highest possible image clarity.

Neurological tests available on-site at the Brain Care Institute


What it does:

Computed Tomography Scan (CT or CAT scan)


uses x-rays and computer technology to make detailed, cross-sectional images (often called slices), both horizontally and vertically, of any part of the body, including the bones, muscles, fat and organs

Electroencephalogram (EEG)

records the brain's continuous, electrical activity by means of electrodes attached to the scalp

Video EEG

videotapes the patient during the EEG to see behavior during a seizure

Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) including MR spectroscopy, MR perfusion (arterial spin labeling), Tractography

uses a combination of large magnets, radiofrequencies and a computer to produce detailed images of organs and structures within the body

Electromyogram (EMG) and Nerve Conduction Velocity

uses electrodes inserted into the muscle or placed on the skin to record electrical activity and muscle response to evaluate muscles and motor neurons

Positron Emission Tomography (PET) Scan

gives a computer picture of the brain's activity rather than its structure by measuring levels of injected glucose labeled with a radioactive tracer 

Magnetic Resonance Angiogram (MRA) Scan 

gives a scan of arteries going to and through the brain 

Cerebral Spinal Fluid Analysis (Spinal Tap or Lumbar Puncture)

makes an evaluation or diagnosis by examining the fluid withdrawn from the spinal column 

Evoked Potentials 

records the brain's electrical response to visual, auditory, and sensory stimuli 


uses dye injected into the spinal canal to make it clearly visible on x-rays 

Ultrasound (Sonogram) 

uses high-frequency sound waves and a computer to create images of blood vessels, tissues, and organs, allowing internal organs to be viewed while functioning to assess blood flow through various vessels 


uses ultra high-frequency sound waves enable the physician to analyze blood flow 


Neurological tests available through UPMC Presbyterian


What it does:

Magnetoencephalogram (MEG)                    

finds the area deep within the brain that is causing epileptic seizures