Advancing Neuromuscular, Musculoskeletal, & Electrodiagnostic Medicine

Who can perform EMG in my state?

This is intended for informational purposes only and does not constitute legal advice. To determine specific legal, governmental, or private criteria that govern the practice of EDX medicine in specific circumstances based on location and provider type, individuals should contact their own state’s Attorney General, practice board(s), or other appropriate authorities.

Because a medical license allows physicians (MD/DO) to diagnose and treat any condition by any means available, most state laws allow physicians (MD/DO) to perform electrodiagnostic studies. However, medical boards in some states may consider the performance of a procedure for which a physician knows he or she is not properly trained as grounds for discipline.

It is the AANEM’s position that only physicians who have proper training in electrodiagnostic medicine should perform electrodiagnostic testing. In addition, only a residency in neurology or physical medicine & rehabilitation can properly prepare a physician to specialize in electrodiagnostic medicine. For detailed discussion of educational recommendations for physicians and the role of nonphysician providers in electrodiagnostic testing, please refer to Who is Qualified to Practice Electrodiagnostic Medicine?

A nonphysican provider’s ability to conduct electrodiagnostic studies varies by state law and/or regulations. In general, regulations are more restrictive for needle EMG than for nerve conduction studies because of the invasive nature of needle EMG. The pdf below provides a general summary, by state, of a chiropractor’s or physical therapist’s authority to perform needle EMG. Because state laws often change, AANEM recommends always checking with appropriate state authorities on scope of practice rules in your provider community.

EMG Laws by State (PDF)