Functional mapping of human medial frontal motor areas
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Two functional brain-mapping techniques, functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) and cortical stimulation by chronically implanted subdural electrodes, were used in combination for presurgical evaluation of three patients with intractable, partial motor seizures. Brain mapping was focused on characterizing motor-related areas in the medial frontal cortex, where all patients had organic lesions. Behavioral tasks for fMRI involved simple finger and foot movements in all patients and mental calculations in one of them. These tasks allowed us to discriminate several medial frontal motor areas: the presupplementary motor areas (pre-SMA), the somatotopically organized SMA proper, and the foot representation of the primary motor cortex. All patients subsequently underwent cortical stimulation through subdural electrodes placed onto the medial hemispheric wall. In each patient, the cortical stimulation map was mostly consistent with that patient's brain map by fMRI. By integrating different lines of information, the combined fMRI and cortical stimulation map will contribute not only to safe and effective surgery but also to further understanding of human functional neuroanatomy.
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