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Brain Topogr. 2003 Fall;16(1):29-38.

Measurement of the conductivity of skull, temporarily removed during epilepsy surgery.

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  • 1Dept. of Clinical Neurophysiology, University Medical Center Utrecht, The Netherlands.


The conductivity of the human skull plays an important role in source localization of brain activity, because it is low as compared to other tissues in the head. The value usually taken for the conductivity of skull is questionable. In a carefully chosen procedure, in which sterility, a stable temperature, and relative humidity were guaranteed, we measured the (lumped, homogeneous) conductivity of the skull in five patients undergoing epilepsy surgery, using an extended four-point method. Twenty-eight current configurations were used, in each of which the potential due to an applied current was measured. A finite difference model, incorporating the geometry of the skull and the electrode locations, derived from CT data, was used to mimic the measurements. The conductivity values found were ranging from 32 mS/m to 80 mS/m, which is much higher than the values reported in other studies. Causes for these higher conductivity values are discussed.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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