Stimulus-evoked potentials contribute to map the epileptogenic zone during stereo-EEG presurgical monitoring



Presurgical monitoring with intracerebral electrodes in patients with drug-resistant focal epilepsy represents a standard invasive procedure to localize the sites of seizures origin, defined as the epileptogenic zone (EZ). During presurgical evaluation, intracerebral single-pulse electrical stimulation (SPES) is performed to define the boundaries of eloquent areas and to evoke seizure-associated symptoms. Extensive intracranial exploration and stimulation generate a large dataset on brain connectivity that can be used to improve EZ detection and to understand the organization of the human epileptic brain. We developed a protocol to analyse field responses evoked by intracranial stimulation. Intracerebral recordings were performed with 105–162 recording sites positioned in fronto-temporal regions in 12 patients with pharmacoresistant focal epilepsy. Recording sites were used for bipolar SPES at 1 Hz. Reproducible early and late phases (<60 ms and 60–500 ms from stimulus artefact, respectively) were identified on averaged evoked responses. Phase 1 and 2 responses recorded at all and each recording sites were plotted on a 3D brain reconstructions. Based on connectivity properties, electrode contacts were primarily identified as receivers, mainly activators or bidirectional. We used connectivity patterns to construct networks and applied cluster partitioning to study the proprieties between potentials evoked/stimulated in different regions. We demonstrate that bidirectional connectivity during phase 1 is a prevalent feature that characterize contacts included in the EZ. This study shows that the application of an analytical protocol on intracerebral stimulus-evoked recordings provides useful information that may contribute to EZ detection and to the management of surgical-remediable epilepsies. Hum Brain Mapp 35:4267–4281, 2014. © 2014 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.