Summary: Purpose: Reports conflict on the relation of glucose metabolism to hippocampal volume in temporal lobe foci. Previous studies usually have used side-side ratios rather than regional metabolic rates.
Methods: We measured hippocampal volume and glucose metabolism in 37 patients with temporal epileptogenic zones identified by ictal video-EEG telemetry. Metabolic rates were normalized to global brain mean.
Results: Both 18-fluoro-2-deoxyglucose-PET and volumetric MRI lateralized the epileptic focus determined by ictal video-EEG. There were significant correlations between left-right metabolic asymmetry and hippocampal formation volume left-right ratios. Comparisons between normalized metabolism and hippocampal formation volume, ignoring the side of the epileptic focus, showed significant relations between left hippocampal volume and left inferior lateral temporal metabolism, right hippocampus and right inferior mesial temporal, and left hippocampus and left inferior mesial temporal metabolism. In contrast, when normalized metabolism was compared with hippocampal volume in the epileptic focus, no relation was found.
Conclusions: Our study suggests that the relation between hippocampal volume and glucose metabolism breaks down in epileptic foci and that hypometabolism is not dependent on neuronal loss. It is consistent with data suggesting that hypometabolism is an independent predictor of surgical outcome.