DOI: 10.1007/s00259-018-4017-0Pages: 1567-1572

18F-FDG PET and high-resolution MRI co-registration for pre-surgical evaluation of patients with conventional MRI-negative refractory extra-temporal lobe epilepsy

1. The Second Hospital of Zhejiang University School of Medicine, Department of Neurology, Epilepsy Center

2. The Second Hospital of Zhejiang University School of Medicine, Department of Nuclear Medicine and PET Center

3. The Second Hospital of Zhejiang University School of Medicine, Department of Radiology

4. The Second Hospital of Zhejiang University School of Medicine, Department of Neurosurgery

5. Cleveland Clinic, Epilepsy Center, Neurological Institute

6. Westmead Hospital, Department of Neurology

Correspondence to:
Mei Tian
Email: meitian@zju.edu.cn

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Abstract

Purpose

Epilepsy that originates outside of the temporal lobe can present some of the most challenging problems for surgical therapy, especially for patients with conventional magnetic resonance imaging (MRI)-negative refractory extra-temporal lobe epilepsy (ETLE). This study aimed to evaluate the clinical value of pre-surgical 18F-fluoro-deoxy-glucose positron emission tomography (18F-FDG PET) and high-resolution MRI (HR-MRI) co-registration in patients with conventional MRI-negative refractory ETLE, and compare their surgical outcomes.

Methods

Sixty-seven patients with conventional MRI-negative refractory ETLE were prospectively included for pre-surgical 18F-FDG PET and HR-MRI examinations. Under the guidance of 18F-FDG PET and HR-MRI co-registration, HR-MRI images were re-read. Based on the image result changes from first reading to re-reading, patients were divided into three groups: Change-1 (lesions of subtle abnormality could be identified in re-read), Change-2 (non-specific abnormalities reported in the first reading were considered as lesions on HR-MRI re-read) and No-change. Post-surgical follow-ups were conducted for up to 59 months.

Results

Visual analysis of 18F-FDG PET showed focal or regional abnormality in 46 patients (68.6%), while the abnormal rate increased to 94.0% (P < 0.05) by co-registration. Of the 67 patients, 46.3% of them were identified as Change-1, and 11.9% as Change-2 after co-registration and HR-MRI re-read. Patients with Change-1 and -2 were more likely to be recommended to receive surgical resection (P < 0.001). In the 17 post-surgical patients, 88% had good outcomes, whereas 11.7% had poor outcomes during our study period.

Conclusion

Pre-surgical evaluation by co-registration of 18F-FDG PET and HR-MRI could improve the identification of the epileptogenic onset zone (EOZ), and may further guide the surgical decision-making and improve the outcome of the refractory ETLE with normal conventional MRI; therefore, it should be recommended as a standard procedure for pre-surgical evaluation of these patients.

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  • Accepted: Apr 10, 2018
  • Online: Apr 18, 2018

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