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ISRN Radiology
Volume 2013 (2013), Article ID 529463, 18 pages
http://dx.doi.org/10.5402/2013/529463
Review Article

Magnetoencephalography: Fundamentals and Established and Emerging Clinical Applications in Radiology

Oxford Centre for Human Brain Activity, Department of Psychiatry, University of Oxford, Warneford Hospital, Oxford OX3 7JX, UK

Received 11 June 2013; Accepted 3 July 2013

Academic Editors: H. Akan, W. Chen, S. Ramcharitar, and V. D. Souftas

Copyright © 2013 Sven Braeutigam. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

Abstract

Magnetoencephalography is a noninvasive, fast, and patient friendly technique for recording brain activity. It is increasingly available and is regarded as one of the most modern imaging tools available to radiologists. The dominant clinical use of this technology currently centers on two, partly overlapping areas, namely, localizing the regions from which epileptic seizures originate, and identifying regions of normal brain function in patients preparing to undergo brain surgery. As a consequence, many radiologists may not yet be familiar with this technique. This review provides an introduction to magnetoencephalography, discusses relevant analytical techniques, and presents recent developments in established and emerging clinical applications such as pervasive developmental disorders. Although the role of magnetoencephalography in diagnosis, prognosis, and patient treatment is still limited, it is argued that this technology is exquisitely capable of contributing indispensable information about brain dynamics not easily obtained with other modalities. This, it is believed, will make this technology an important clinical tool for a wide range of disorders in the future.