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Principles of Stereotactic Electroencephalography in Epilepsy Surgery

Lhatoo, Samden; Lacuey, Nuria; Ryvlin, Philippe

Journal of Clinical Neurophysiology: December 2016 - Volume 33 - Issue 6 - p 478–482
doi: 10.1097/WNP.0000000000000264
Invited Review

Summary: Stereotactic electroencephalography is a method for the invasive study for the human epileptic brain as a prelude to epilepsy surgery. The discipline of stereotactic electroencephalography is underpinned by an anatomo-electro-clinical analysis of epileptic seizures of focal origin and goes beyond simple stereotactic placement of depth electrodes. Stringent analysis of semiological and electrophysiological features is coupled with an understanding of this information in 3D anatomical space. Stereotactic electroencephalography offers significant advantages over subdural grid implantations, allowing pinpoint accuracy access to sulcal areas and deep brain structures, such as the insula, cingulate, basal and mesial brain regions, while associated with lower complication rates. Recent times have seen an exponential growth in stereotactic electroencephalography interest, driven in part by increasing complexity of typical epilepsy surgery patients in epilepsy surgery centers. Such patients are much more likely to be magnetic resonance imaging negative, or reoperations, or to have multifocal or widespread areas of cortical abnormalities. Herein, we discuss the advantages of stereotactic electroencephalography, principles of patient selection, implantation, and interpretation.

*Epilepsy Center, UH Case Medical Center, Cleveland, Ohio, U.S.A.;

Department of Neurology, Vall d'Hebron University Hospital, Department de Medicine, Universitat Autonoma de Barcelona, Barcelona, Spain; and

Département des Neurosciences Cliniques, Lausanne.

Address correspondence and reprint requests to Samden Lhatoo, MD, FRCP(Lon), Department of Neurology, Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine, U.S.A.; e-mail:

The authors declare no conflicts of interest.

© 2016 by the American Clinical Neurophysiology Society