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Behavioural Neurology
Volume 6, Issue 4, Pages 187-192

Cortical Activation during a Cognitive Challenge in Patients with Chronic Temporal Lobe Epilepsy—A Dynamic SPECT Study

P. J. Kirkpatrick,3 R. Morris,1 G. M. S. Syed,2 and C. E. Polkey1

1Departments of Neurosurgery and Psychology, Maudsley Hospital, DeCrespigny Park, Camberwell, London SE5 8AZ, UK
2Department of Nuclear Medicine, King's College Hospital, Denmark Hill, London SE5 9RS, UK
3University Department of Neurosurgery, Block A, Level 4, Addenbrookes Hospital, Cambridge CB2 2QQ, UK

Received 30 July 1993; Accepted 14 September 1993

Copyright © 1993 Hindawi Publishing Corporation. 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.


In a pilot group of six patients suffering from chronic temporal lobe epilepsy, single photon emission computerized tomography (SPECT) has been used to image the changes in relative cerebral blood flow between rest (static scan) and conditions of cognitive activation (activated scan). The cognitive challenge used during activation comprised a test of word memory, and the performance was expressed as a word memory score (WMS) for each individual. An activation index (AI) was calculated from the mean normalized density counts in specific regions of interest (ROIs), and values obtained were analysed for correlation with the WMS. The mean AI was increased significantly in the right lateral temporal cortex, the right and left inferior frontal regions, the left temporal pole, and the right medial temporal cortex. A positive correlation with the WMS was found in the medial temporal cortices, and this relationship was significant for the right medial temporal ROI.