Mining continuous intracranial EEG in focal canine epilepsy: Relating interictal bursts to seizure onsets

Epilepsia. 2016 Jan;57(1):89-98. doi: 10.1111/epi.13249. Epub 2015 Nov 26.


Objective: Brain regions are localized for resection during epilepsy surgery based on rare seizures observed during a short period of intracranial electroencephalography (iEEG) monitoring. Interictal epileptiform bursts, which are more prevalent than seizures, may provide complementary information to aid in epilepsy evaluation. In this study, we leverage a long-term iEEG dataset from canines with naturally occurring epilepsy to investigate interictal bursts and their electrographic relationship to seizures.

Methods: Four dogs were included in this study, each monitored previously with continuous iEEG for periods of 475.7, 329.9, 45.8, and 451.8 days, respectively, for a total of >11,000 h. Seizures and bursts were detected and validated by two board-certified epileptologists. A published Bayesian model was applied to analyze the dynamics of interictal epileptic bursts on EEG and compare them to seizures.

Results: In three dogs, bursts were stereotyped and found to be statistically similar to periods before or near seizure onsets. Seizures from one dog during status epilepticus were markedly different from other seizures in terms of burst similarity.

Significance: Shorter epileptic bursts explored in this work have the potential to yield significant information about the distribution of epileptic events. In our data, bursts are at least an order of magnitude more prevalent than seizures and occur much more regularly. Our finding that bursts often display pronounced similarity to seizure onsets suggests that they contain relevant information about the epileptic networks from which they arise and may aide in the clinical evaluation of epilepsy in patients.

Keywords: EEG; burst; canine; intracranial.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Bayes Theorem
  • Brain Waves / physiology*
  • Dogs
  • Electroencephalography
  • Epilepsies, Partial / physiopathology*
  • Epilepsies, Partial / veterinary*
  • Monitoring, Physiologic
  • Time Factors