Purpose of review
Precise localization of the epileptogenic zone is imperative for the success of resective surgery of drug-resistant epileptic patients. To decrease the number of surgical failures, clinical research has been focusing on finding new biomarkers. For the past decades, high-frequency oscillations (HFOs, 80–500 Hz) have ousted interictal spikes
– the classical interictal marker – from the research spotlight. Many studies have claimed that HFOs were more linked to epileptogenicity than spikes. This present review aims at refining this statement in light of recent studies.
Analysis based on single-patient characteristics has not been able to determine which of HFOs or spikes were better marker of epileptogenic tissues. Physiological HFOs are one of the main obstacles to translate HFOs to clinical practice as separating them from pathological HFOs remains a challenge. Fast ripples (a subgroup of HFOs, 250–500 Hz) which are mostly pathological are not found in all epileptogenic tissues.
Quantified measures of HFOs and spikes give complementary results, but many barriers still persist in applying them in clinical routine. The current way of testing HFO and spike detectors and their performance in delineating the epileptogenic zone is debatable and still lacks practicality. Solutions to handle physiological HFOs have been proposed but are still at a preliminary stage.