Sensitivity and Specificity of Interictal EEG-fMRI for Detecting the Ictal Onset Zone at Different Statistical Thresholds
Frontiers Media SA -- Frontiers in Neurology
DOI 10.3389/fneur.2014.00131
  1. EEG-fMRI
  2. refractory focal epilepsy
  3. presurgical evaluation
  4. sensitivity and specificity
  5. interictal

There is currently a lack of knowledge about electroencephalography (EEG)-functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) specificity. Our aim was to define sensitivity and specificity of blood oxygen level dependent (BOLD) responses to interictal epileptic spikes during EEG-fMRI for detecting the ictal onset zone (IOZ). We studied 21 refractory focal epilepsy patients who had a well-defined IOZ after a full presurgical evaluation and interictal spikes during EEG-fMRI. Areas of spike-related BOLD changes overlapping the IOZ in patients were considered as true positives; if no overlap was found, they were treated as false-negatives. Matched healthy case-controls had undergone similar EEG-fMRI in order to determine true-negative and false-positive fractions. The spike-related regressor of the patient was used in the design matrix of the healthy case-control. Suprathreshold BOLD changes in the brain of controls were considered as false positives, absence of these changes as true negatives. Sensitivity and specificity were calculated for different statistical thresholds at the voxel level combined with different cluster size thresholds and represented in receiver operating characteristic (ROC)-curves. Additionally, we calculated the ROC-curves based on the cluster containing the maximal significant activation. We achieved a combination of 100% specificity and 62% sensitivity, using a Z-threshold in the interval 3.4–3.5 and cluster size threshold of 350 voxels. We could obtain higher sensitivity at the expense of specificity. Similar performance was found when using the cluster containing the maximal significant activation. Our data provide a guideline for different EEG-fMRI settings with their respective sensitivity and specificity for detecting the IOZ. The unique cluster containing the maximal significant BOLD activation was a sensitive and specific marker of the IOZ.