What is NEBA?
NEBA is the first of a new kind of medical device cleared by the FDA that uses brainwaves (EEG) to help clinicians more accurately diagnose ADHD in children and adolescents (ages 6 – 17.99 years). FDA created an entirely new category of medical device to regulate NEBA. These devices are called Neuropsychiatric Interpretive EEG-based Assessment Aids or NIEAs for short.
NEBA uses brainwaves (EEG) along with a clinician’s initial diagnostic impression to improve the accuracy of the ADHD diagnostic process. NEBA measures the electrical activity in the front part of the brain to derive a biomarker. NEBA then combines this information with the clinician’s diagnostic impression. Using this data and a patented method, NEBA categorizes children with ADHD symptoms into three groups:
- ADHD – confirmatory support
- Support for further testing – focus on ADHD
- Support for further testing – focus on ‘other conditions’
A FDA validation study (available from FDA’s website) showed that NEBA’s categorization can help clinicians reduce overdiagnosis of ADHD to as low as 3%.
How long does NEBA take?
NEBA takes about 15 – 20 minutes to administer. That includes setup and clean up times, and data collection. We usually process NEBA Reports within about an hour. Your clinician may schedule the NEBA process – initial diagnostic workup and impression, NEBA, clinical integration of results and parent/caregiver meeting — in one or several visits.
How does NEBA work?
Prior to NEBA test day, your clinician will instruct you and your child what to do. For example your child will be instructed to come to NEBA test day with clean hair with no braids. NEBA works by collecting brainwave data and processing it into a report. To collect the data, the NEBA equipment uses special disposable stick-on electrodes. A special electrode is used on the top of the head – it doesn’t have adhesive on it and it’s held in place by an elastic band. The electrodes are non-invasive, that is they rest on the skin’s surface. The NEBA technician gently removes the electrodes after use.