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Semi-automated EEG Enhancement Improves Localization of Ictal Onset Zone With EEG-Correlated fMRI

Journal Contribution - Journal Article

Objective: To improve the accuracy of detecting the ictal onset zone, we propose to enhance the epilepsy-related activity present in the EEG signals, before mapping their BOLD correlates through EEG-correlated fMRI analysis. Methods: Based solely on a segmentation of interictal epileptic discharges (IEDs) on the EEG, we train multi-channel Wiener filters (MWF) which enhance IED-like waveforms, and suppress background activity and noisy influences. Subsequently, we use EEG-correlated fMRI to find the brain regions in which the BOLD signal fluctuation corresponds to the filtered signals' time-varying power (after convolving with the hemodynamic response function), and validate the identified regions by quantitatively comparing them to ground-truth maps of the (resected or hypothesized) ictal onset zone. We validate the performance of this novel predictor vs. that of commonly used unitary or power-weighted predictors and a recently introduced connectivity-based metric, on a cohort of 12 patients with refractory epilepsy. Results: The novel predictor, derived from the filtered EEG signals, allowed the detection of the ictal onset zone in a larger percentage of epileptic patients (92% vs. at most 83% for the other predictors), and with higher statistical significance, compared to existing predictors. At the same time, the new method maintains maximal specificity by not producing false positive activations in healthy controls. Significance: The findings of this study advocate for the use of the MWF to maximize the signal-to-noise ratio of IED-like events in the interictal EEG, and subsequently use time-varying power as a sensitive predictor of the BOLD signal, to localize the ictal onset zone.
Journal: Frontiers in Neurology
Volume: 10
Number of pages: 16
Publication year:2019
Keywords:Psychiatry & neurology, Neurosciences & psychopharmacology