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Neurology. 1996 Feb;46(2):360-7.

Does the central sulcus divide motor and sensory functions? Cortical mapping of human hand areas as revealed by electrical stimulation through subdural grid electrodes.

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Department of Neurosurgery, The Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, Baltimore, MD 21287-7247, USA.


To clarify the exact anatomic relationship of electrically identified hand areas to the central sulcus, we constructed cortical surface renderings of magnetic resonance images (MRI) to locate the central sulcus accurately and measured the distances of stimulated points from the central sulcus and the Sylvian fissure. We obtained hand responses in 33 patients who underwent implantation of subdural grid electrodes for evaluation and surgical treatment of intractable epilepsy and analyzed these responses according to the presence of motor, sensory, mixed motor and sensory, and arrest responses. Hand motor responses occurred not only in the precentral gyrus but also in the postcentral gyrus, with great variability in superior-to-inferior distribution. Sensory responses also occurred in both the precentral and postcentral gyri with a distribution more ventral than that of motor responses. Mixed motor and sensory responses tended to be limited to the middle part of the central sulcus. Sites where electrical stimulation arrested simple hand repetitive voluntary movements occurred widely throughout the premotor and primary sensorimotor cortices. These data indicate a marked variability in the location of the human cortical hand area, and suggest that motor and sensory hand cortices overlap and are not divided in a simple manner by the central sulcus.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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