Spatiotemporal patterns of high-frequency activity (80–170 Hz) in long-term intracranial EEG


To determine the utility of high-frequency activity (HFA) and epileptiform spikes as biomarkers for epilepsy, we examined the variability in their rates and locations using long-term ambulatory intracranial EEG (iEEG) recordings.


This study used continuous iEEG recordings obtained over an average of 1.4 years from 15 patients with drug-resistant focal epilepsy. HFA was defined as 80- to 170-Hz events with amplitudes clearly larger than the background, which was automatically detected with a custom algorithm. The automatically detected HFA was compared with visually annotated high-frequency oscillations (HFOs). The variations of HFA rates were compared with spikes and seizures on patient-specific and electrode-specific bases.


HFA included manually annotated HFOs and high-amplitude events occurring in the 80- to 170-Hz range without observable oscillatory behavior. HFA and spike rates had high amounts of intrapatient and interpatient variability. Rates of HFA and spikes had large variability after electrode implantation in most of the patients. Locations of HFA and spikes varied up to weeks in more than one-third of the patients. Both HFA and spike rates showed strong circadian rhythms in all patients, and some also showed multiday cycles. Furthermore, the circadian patterns of HFA and spike rates had patient-specific correlations with seizures, which tended to vary across electrodes.


Analysis of HFA and epileptiform spikes should consider postimplantation variability. HFA and epileptiform spikes, like seizures, show circadian rhythms. However, the circadian profiles can vary spatially within patients, and their correlations to seizures are patient-specific.


Zhuying Chen, David B. Grayden, Anthony N. Burkitt, Udaya Seneviratne, Wendyl J. D’Souza, Chris French, Philippa J. Karoly, Katrina Dell, Kent Leyde, Mark J. Cook, and Matias I. Maturana.

Published on 16 February 2021

Neurology Journal

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