Volume conduction effects in EEG and MEG

S.P. van den Broek, S.P. van den Broek, F. Reinders, M. Donderwinkel, M.J. Peters

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    Volume conductor models that are commonly used to describe the EEG and MEG neglect holes in the skull, lesions, the ventricles, and anisotropic conductivity of the skull. To determine the influence of these features, simulations were carried out using the finite element method. The simulations showed that a hole in the skull will have a large effect on the EEG, and as one of the consequences localisation errors up to 15 mm may occur. The effect on the MEG is negligible. The presence of a lesion may cause the shape and magnitude of the EEG and MEG to change. Hence, a lesion has to be taken into account, if the active neurones are close to it. Moreover, a localisation procedure may fail if the lesion is not included in the volume conductor model. Inclusion of the ventricles in the volume conductor model is necessary only if sources are in their vicinity or if their sizes are unusually large. Anisotropic conductivity of the skull has a smearing effect on the EEG but does not influence the MEG.
    Original languageUndefined
    Pages (from-to)522-534
    Number of pages13
    JournalElectroencephalography and clinical neurophysiology
    Issue number106
    Publication statusPublished - 1998


    • Holes
    • Volume conduction
    • MEG
    • METIS-128372
    • Ventricles
    • IR-73635
    • Anisotropy
    • EEG

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