July 11, 2018

Clinical Trial: Investigation of Human Epileptic Networks by fMRI

In the Emilia-Romagna Region approximately 19.000 people are affected by epilepsy. About 25% of epileptic patients are drug-resistant (DRE) and some of them are eligible for resective surgery of the epileptogenic zone (EZ). The precise EZ localization is crucial for a good surgical outcome. Intracranial EEG (icEEG) recordings remain the gold-standard to localise the EZ. New neuroimaging techniques, like simultaneous recording of functional MRI and EEG (EEG-fMRI), with advanced methodological approaches as effective connectivity analysis (i.e. Dynamic Causal Modelling-DCM) might improve the EZ localization.


(1) To develop a non-invasive protocol for the investigation of the epileptic network in patients with surgically remediable epilepsies; (2) To shed light on the patho-physiological mechanisms of drug resistance in DRE; (3) To provide a validation of effective connectivity applied to fMRI data in epilepsy.

Eligibility Criteria

Inclusion Criteria

  • Adults patients (?18yrs) diagnosed with DRE (drug-resistant epilepsy), candidate for epilepsy surgery who will undergo directly to the resection of the epileptic focus or to icEEG recordings for a better EZ definition


Exclusion Criteria

  • Patients with idiopathic generalized epilepsies;
  • Patients with focal epilepsy responders to AED;
  • Patients with refractory focal epilepsy but contraindicated to perform a MRI;
  • Patients who refute to have the EEG-fMRI;
  • Patients whose cognitive status is too impaired to complete the necessary study forms.

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