Removing high-frequency oscillations: A prospective multicenter study on seizure outcome


To evaluate the use of interictal high-frequency oscillations (HFOs) in epilepsy surgery for prediction of postsurgical seizure outcome in a prospective multicenter trial.


We hypothesized that a seizure-free outcome could be expected in patients in whom the surgical planning included the majority of HFO-generating brain tissue while a poor seizure outcome could be expected in patients in whom only a few such areas were planned to be resected. Fifty-two patients were included from 3 tertiary epilepsy centers during a 1-year period. Ripples (80–250 Hz) and fast ripples (250–500 Hz) were automatically detected during slow-wave sleep with chronic intracranial EEG in 2 centers and acute intraoperative electrocorticography in 1 patient.


There was a correlation between the removal of HFO-generating regions and seizure-free outcome at the group level for all patients. No correlation was found, however, for the center-specific analysis, and an individual prognostication of seizure outcome was true in only 36 patients (67%). Moreover, some patients became seizure-free without removal of the majority of HFO-generating tissue. The investigation of influencing factors, including comparisons of visual and automatic analysis, using a threshold analysis for areas with high HFO activity, and excluding contacts bordering the resection, did not result in improved prognostication.


On an individual patient level, a prediction of outcome was not possible in all patients. This may be due to the analysis techniques used. Alternatively, HFOs may be less specific for epileptic tissue than earlier studies have indicated.

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