Neuroimaging of memory in frontal lobe epilepsy

Academic Article

Abstract

  • In a large percentage of epilepsies, seizures have focal onset. These epilepsies are associated with a wide range of behavioral and cognitive deficits sometimes limited to the functions encompassed within the ictal onset zone but, more frequently, expanding beyond it. The presence of impairments associated with neuroanatomical areas outside of the ictal onset zone suggests distal propagation of epileptic activity via brain networks and interconnected whole-brain neural circuitry. In patients with frontal lobe epilepsy (FLE), using functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) to identify deficits in working, semantic, and episodic memory may provide a lens through which to understand typical and atypical network organization. A network approach to focal epilepsy is relevant in these patients because of the frequently noted early age of seizure onset. Early seizure-related disruption in healthy brain development may result in a significant brain reorganization, development of compensation-related mechanisms of dealing with function abnormalities and disruptions, and the propagation of epileptic activity from the focus to widespread brain areas (functional deficit zones). Benefits of a network approach in the study of focal epilepsy are discussed along with considerations for future neuroimaging studies of patients with FLE.
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    Author List

  • Nair S; Szaflarski JP
  • Volume

  • 103