Local cortical function after uncomplicated subdural electrode implantation

Laboratory investigation

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Object

Although subdural electrodes are routinely used to map regional brain function, it is unknown if the presence of these implants hinders local cortical function. The authors used psychophysical methods to measure the effect of uncomplicated electrode implantation on local cortical function.

Methods

Local field potentials were used to map receptive fields (RFs) for subdural electrodes that were unilaterally implanted on early visual cortex in 4 patients. After electrode implantation, patients did a task that required them to detect an orientation change in a flashing visual stimulus that was presented either inside the mapped RF or outside the RF in the diametrically opposite portion of the other hemifield. The size of the orientation change was varied to span a wide range of behavioral performance. Psychometric curves were generated by fitting behavioral responses to a logistic function. The threshold was defined as the point at which the fitted function crossed 50% detection.

Results

Data were well fit by the logistic function in all 4 patients for both RF and non-RF conditions. None of the volunteers tested showed a statistically significant difference in detection threshold, reaction time, or in the slope of the psychometric function for stimuli presented inside or outside the RF.

Conclusions

Subdural electrodes implanted for extraoperative monitoring do not impair psychophysical performance for a task based on stimuli lying within the RF for recording electrodes. This finding suggests that these electrodes can be used reliably for accurate assessment of regional neurological function.

Abbreviations used in this paper:CT = computed tomography; MR = magnetic resonance; RF = receptive field.
Article Information

Contributor Notes

Address correspondence to: Daniel Yoshor, M.D., Department of Neurosurgery, Baylor College of Medicine, One Baylor Plaza, Houston, Texas 77030. email: dyoshor@bcm.edu.

© AANS, except where prohibited by US copyright law.

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