Structural and functional neuroimaging in intractable epilepsy|
Chinchure, Swati; Kesavadas, Chandrasekharan & Thomas, Bejoy
Medical management remains unsatisfactory in about a third of patients with epilepsy and some of them are candidates for resective epilepsy surgery. Structural and functional neuroimaging plays an important role in the identification of the precise cortical region responsible for seizures and is very crucial for a good surgical outcome. Furthermore, identification of eloquent cortical areas near the region to be resected is essential to avoid postoperative neurologic deficit. The magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) protocol for epilepsy can be individually tailored depending on the seizure semiology and possibly electroencephalography. New MRI techniques demonstrate the structure of the brain in fine detail, help in understanding the underlying pathology, and demonstrate functional activity of the brain with high spatial and temporal resolution. Metabolic imaging techniques, such as positron emission tomography (PET) and single photon emission tomography (SPECT) visualize metabolic alterations of the brain in the ictal and interictal states. In MR-negative epilepsy patients, these techniques may have localizing value. The proper use and interpretation of the findings provided by these new technologies is crucial. In this review article, we discuss various conventional and advanced MRI techniques, interpretation of various findings, and the role of functional imaging modalities, such as functional MRI, PET, and SPECT in the localization of epileptogenic substrate as well as for understanding the pathophysiology, propagation, and neurochemical correlates of epilepsy.
Epilepsy surgery, functional magnetic resonance imaging, intractable epilepsy, magnetic resonance imaging, positron emission tomography, single photon emission tomography (SPECT)