Functional imaging of memory in epilepsy

Lars Frings and Kathrin Wagner

in Epilepsy and Memory

Published in print June 2012 | ISBN: 9780199580286
Published online September 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780191739408 | DOI:
Functional imaging of memory in epilepsy

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Previous studies on declarative memory function in epilepsy using functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) have primarily pursued two aims: the localization or lateralization of the seizure focus and the reorganization of declarative memory functions; and the pre-surgical prediction of memory outcome after surgical resection within the temporal lobe (TL). It has been demonstrated that medial temporal lobe (MTL) activation patterns differ between left- and right-sided MTL epilepsy patients, which in turn can be differentiated from healthy control subjects. It has further been shown that the functional integrity of the ipsilesional as well as the contralesional MTL can contribute to the prediction of memory outcome after surgery. Recently, the evaluation of alterations of MTL connectivity patterns, as assessed with fMRI, has gained some attention. It has been demonstrated that circumscribed brain damage, like hippocampal sclerosis, may exert effects on functionally connected but remote regions. However, in contrast to pre-surgical language fMRI, memory fMRI in most centres has not been established as a standard pre-surgical diagnostic tool. This chapter argues in favour of further development of the technique and considers memory fMRI to be potentially informative, especially regarding pre-operative prediction of memory outcome and, therefore, patient counselling.

Keywords: functional magnetic resonance imaging; fMRI; memory functions; medial temporal lobe

Chapter.  7895 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Neuroscience

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