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Professional Radiology and Outpatient Imaging Services

Wada Test

What is a Wada test?

A Wada test is an endovascular procedure that is utilized to provide valuable functional testing for neurosurgical planning. A battery of neuropsychological tests are performed both before and following the administration of a barbiturate (sodium amytal or brevital). The medication provides a temporary suppression of function. The test results are then analyzed to map out brain function and provide the surgeon with guidance on what is or is not safe to include in their surgical treatment of seizures or other brain disorders.

How is a Wada test performed?

A Wada test is performed similar to a diagnostic cerebral angiogram. The only difference is that after the images are obtained, the medication is injected through the catheter. The neuropsychological testing team then performs their tests. The exam may involve assessment of both the right and left sides.