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Keywords:

  • epilepsy;
  • SPECT;
  • cerebral blood flow;
  • Tc99m-HMPAQ

ABSTRACT

With Single Photon Emission Computed Tomography (SPECT) of regional cerebral bloodflow (rCBF) ictally and interictally, regional changes of rCBF can be detected in many cases with medically intractable complex partial seizures. Interictal SPECT shows abnormal rCBF in the epileptogenic temporal lobe in 40% to 85% of the patients. A critical survey of the methodological problems considering isotopes, scanners, data analysis and patient population is presented here as well as a few semi-quantitative studies including our own. It is concluded, that SPECT of rCBF is a useful, non-invasive method of localizing the epileptogenic zone in patients with severe partial focal epilepsy. Ictal SPECT of rCBF has a higher predictive value and is more sensitive than interictal studies for localization of the seizure focus. Interictal SPECT using a high-resolution system obtains an almost as high frequency of localization of the focus. With low resolution scanners, a minor frequency is observed. Both interictal and ictal SPECT recordings should be obtained for localization of the epileptogenic focus in presurgical cases as interictal hypoperfusion and ictal hyperperfusion demonstrated in the same focal area are highly characteristic of a seizure focus.