Morphometric analysis on T1-weighted MRI complements visual MRI review in focal cortical dysplasia

Lily C. Wong-Kisiel, Diego F. Tovar Quiroga, Daniel L. Kenney-Jung, Robert J. Witte, Alexandra Santana-Almansa, Gregory A. Worrell, Jeffrey Britton, Benjamin H. Brinkmann

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

32 Scopus citations


Objective: Focal cortical dysplasia (FCD) is a common pathology in focal drug resistant epilepsy (DRE). Voxel based morphometric MRI analysis has been proposed as an adjunct to visual detection of FCD, which remains challenging given the subtle radiographic appearance of FCD. This study evaluates the diagnostic value of morphometric analysis program (MAP) in focal DRE with pathology-confirmed FCD. Methods: Automated morphometric analysis program analysis generated z-score maps derived from T1 images, referenced to healthy adult or pediatric controls for each of 39 cases with pathology-confirmed FCD. MAP identified abnormal extension of gray matter into white matter (MAP-E) and blurring of the gray-white matter junction (MAP-J), independently of clinical data and other imaging modalities. MRI was visually reviewed by neuroradiologists as part of usual clinical care, and independently re-reviewed retrospectively by a neuroradiologist with >10-years’ experience in epilepsy MRI. Sensitivity and specificity were calculated for MRI, MAP, scalp-EEG, PET and SISCOM compared to resection area (RA). Results: In this cohort of 39 histologically proven FCD cases, the sensitivity and specificity of MAP-J [64% (95% CI 48%–77%) and 96% (95% CI 93%–0.98%)] and MAP-E [74% (95% CI 59%–86%) and 94% (95% CI 91%–97%)] were higher than qualitative MRI review, SISCOM, and FDG-PET. Initial MRI review detected FCD in 17, expert review identified 26. Among cases not detected by initial MRI review, MAP-J correctly identified FCD in 12 additional cases and MAP-E in 13 cases. Among cases not detected by expert MRI review, MAP-J correctly identified 6 and MAP-E 8 cases. Excellent surgical outcome was achieved in 76% of patients. Significance: MAP showed favorable sensitivity compared to visual inspection and other non-invasive imaging modalities. MAP complements non-invasive imaging evaluation for detection of FCD in focal DRE patients.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)184-191
Number of pages8
JournalEpilepsy Research
StatePublished - Feb 1 2018

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This study was supported by a gift from Mr. and Mrs. David Hawk , the Mayo CCaTS grant UL1TR000135 , and the Mayo Clinic Center for Individualized Medicine . Ms. Alexandra Santana Almansa was a medical student supported by Center for Translational Science Activities (CTSA) - UPR Summer Research Experience (CTS Grant Number TL1 TR000137 from the National Center for Advancing Translational Science). The authors thank Sherry Klingerman and Min Zhang PhD for technical assistance.

Publisher Copyright:
© 2018


  • Drug resistant epilepsy
  • Focal cortical dysplasia
  • MRI
  • Morphometric analysis


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