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J Clin Neurophysiol. 2013 Dec;30(6):591-6. doi: 10.1097/01.wnp.0000436900.48243.9f.

Intraoperative functional cortical mapping of language.

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Division of Intraoperative Neurophysiology, Massachusetts General Hospital, Boston, Massachusetts, U.S.A.


Intraoperative neurophysiologic monitoring endeavors to preserve the integrity of the nervous system at a time of potential risk. The examination of language function in the operative setting is a unique task that requires a detailed and systematic approach to be carried out efficiently and reliably in this dynamic environment. In this review, we detail the technique used to identify eloquent language cortex during awake craniotomy. This technique requires a coordinated effort to testing, which is reliant on preoperative assessment and structured approach to functional cortical mapping by the surgical, anesthetic, and neurophysiology teams. Despite the intricate nature of this modality of testing, the accurate identification of language areas facilitates neurosurgeries for tumor and focal epilepsy syndromes in the dominant cerebral hemisphere, which depend on maximal margins of resection for best outcomes.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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