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Neurophysiology is a part of physiology. Neurophysiology is the study of nervous system function. Primarily, it is connected with neurobiology, psychology, neurology, clinical neurophysiology, electrophysiology, ethology, neuroanatomy, cognitive science and other brain sciences.
Surgical Neurophysiology is an applied subfield of neuroscience. A surgical neurophysiologist may work as a researcher at a university, or as a member of a surgical team in the surgical suite or operating room (OR). In the OR, he or she is involved with the functional monitoring of neural structures and neural systems with the aim of safe guarding the nervous system of the patient. He or she may also facilitate the surgical procedure by performing electrophysiological assays to identify neural structures. These intraoperative roles are termed neuromonitoring. Neuromonitoring is of great benefit to a patient undergoing any of a wide variety of surgeries -- generally, any surgery in which:
- there is a high risk of damage to the nervous system, and/or
- the procedure requires functional guidance.
Surgical neurophysiologists are trained in neuroscience, electrophysiology, and anatomy. The specialised skills and judgment needed to perform neuromonitoring are almost always obtained through a fellowship or mentoring in the OR. The specialised knowledge may be obtained similarly, or formally, and some in the field have an MD, Ph.D., ScD and AuD. Two stages of credentialing exist: the technologist level CNIM , and the professional level D.ABNM .