Electroencephalography and Brain MRI Patterns in Encephalopathy

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2 Scopus citations


Introduction. Using electroencephalography (EEG) and histology in patients with diffuse encephalopathy, Gloor et al reported that paroxysmal synchronous discharges (PSDs) on EEG required combined cortical gray (CG) and subcortical gray (SCG) matter pathology, while polymorphic delta activity (PDA) occurred in patients with white matter pathology. In patients with encephalopathy, we compared EEG findings and magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) to determine if MRI reflected similar pathological EEG correlations. Methods. Retrospective case control study of 52 cases with EEG evidence of encephalopathy and 50 controls without evidence of encephalopathy. Review of clinical, EEG and MRI data acquired within 4 days of each other. Results. The most common EEG finding in encephalopathy was background slowing, in 96.1%. We found PSDs in 0% of cases with the combination of CG and SCG abnormalities. Although 13.5% (n = 7) had PSDs on EEG; 3 of these had CG and 4 had SCG abnormalities. A total of 73.1% (38/52) had white matter abnormalities - of these 28.9% (11/38) had PDA. Conclusion. PSDs were found with either CG or SCG MRI abnormalities and did not require a combination of the two. In agreement with Gloor et al, PDA occurred with white matter MRI abnormalities in the absence of gray matter abnormalities.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)150-156
Number of pages7
JournalClinical EEG and Neuroscience
Issue number2
StatePublished - Apr 2016


  • electroencephalogram
  • encephalopathy
  • gray matter
  • magnetic resonance imaging
  • white matter

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neurology
  • Clinical Neurology


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