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J Korean Med Sci. 2001 Dec;16(6):689-96.

Functional neuroimaging in epilepsy: FDG PET and ictal SPECT.

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Department of Nuclear Medicine, Seoul National University College of Medicine, Seoul, Korea.


Epileptogenic zones can be localized by F-18 fluorodeoxyglucose positron emission tomography (FDG PET) and ictal single-photon emission computed tomography(SPECT). In medial temporal lobe epilepsy, the diagnostic sensitivity of FDG PET or ictal SPECT is excellent, however, the sensitivity of MRI is so high that the incremental sensitivity by FDG PET or ictal SPECT has yet to be proven. When MRI findings are ambiguous or normal, or discordant with those of ictal EEG, FDG PET and ictal SPECT are helpful for localization without the need for invasive ictal EEG. In neocortical epilepsy, the sensitivities of FDG PET or ictal SPECT are fair. However, because almost a half of the patients are normal on MRI, FDG PET and ictal SPECT are helpful for localization or at least for lateralization in these non-lesional epilepsies in order to guide the subdural insertion of electrodes. Interpretation of FDG PET has been recently advanced by voxel-based analysis and automatic volume of interest analysis based on a population template. Both analytical methods confirmed the performance of previous visual interpretation results. Ictal SPECT was analyzed using subtraction methods(coregistered to MRI) and voxel-based analysis. Rapidity of injection of tracers, HMPAO versus ECD, and repeated ictal SPECT, which remain the technical issues of ictal SPECT, are detailed.

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