Purpose: To evaluate if single voxel proton magnetic resonance spectroscopy (SV-MRS) can help in lateralising and sometimes in localizing an epileptogenic focus. The assumption is that in MRI negative patients the underlying pathology most often is focal cortical dysplasia (FCD). Several studies have shown that in the presence of FCD there are also (1)H-MRS abnormalities on the contralateral side. However, in most cases the studied group was not homogeneous and included different forms of dysplasias, including band heterotopias and polymicrogyria, and the studies used different spectroscopy protocols. In the present study, using bilateral SV-MRS we investigated the presence of a lateralisation index in two groups of patients with localisation related epilepsy: patients with focal cortical dysplasia on MRI and patients without MRI abnormalities with a focus identified by MEG. Aim of the study was to show that in both groups the expected epileptogenic side shows more pronounced metabolic alterations, making MRS a possible screening tool for clarifying lateralisation questions in patients with cryptogenic localisation related epilepsy. Methods: In ten patients a single voxel was placed over the FCD and in nine patients over the region of interest (ROI) as indicated by MEG. In all patients a voxel was also placed in the contralateral homologus location. We used metabolite concentrations as peak ratios relative to the creatine (Cr) peak to calculate a lateralisation index. Results: In both groups NAA/Cr was significantly lower on the affected side whereas the results for Cho/Cr were more diverse. There were no significant differences between the two groups. The limitations of the used methods and the implications of the findings are discussed.
- Lateralisation index