April 25, 2023

Automated Spike and Seizure Detection: Are We Ready for Implementation?

Abstract found on PubMed

Objective: Automated detection of spikes and seizures has been a subject of research for several decades now. There have been important advances, yet automated detection in EMU (Epilepsy Monitoring Unit) settings has not been accepted as standard practice. We intend to implement this software at our EMU and so carried out a qualitative study to identify factors that hinder (‘barriers’) and facilitate (‘enablers’) implementation.

Method: Twenty-two semi-structured interviews were conducted with 14 technicians and neurologists involved in recording and reporting EEGs and eight neurologists who receive EEG reports in the outpatient department. The study was reported according to the Consolidated Criteria for Reporting Qualitative Studies (COREQ).

Results: We identified 14 barriers and 14 enablers for future implementation. Most barriers were reported by technicians. The most prominent barrier was lack of trust in the software, especially regarding seizure detection and false positive results. Additionally, technicians feared losing their EEG review skills or their jobs. Most commonly reported enablers included potential efficiency in the EEG workflow, the opportunity for quantification of EEG findings and the willingness to try the software.

Conclusions: This study provides insight into the perspectives of users and offers recommendations for implementing automated spike and seizure detection in EMUs.