Encyclopedia of Clinical Neuropsychology

2018 Edition
| Editors: Jeffrey S. Kreutzer, John DeLuca, Bruce Caplan


  • Alan WeintraubEmail author
  • John Whyte
Reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-57111-9_24


Electroencephalography (EEG) most commonly refers to the surface recording of the brain’s ongoing spontaneous electrical activity, although recordings can be made from electrodes placed on the dura or within the brain parenchyma for specialized purposes.

Historical Background

Richard Caton discovered the presence of electrical activity in the brain, in 1875. It was not until 1924 that methods of amplifying these electrical potentials were developed, which allowed ongoing recording of EEG rhythms via surface recordings.

Current Knowledge

Measurement of the EEG signal has been applied to multiple clinical problems, including epilepsy; sleep disorders, and the diagnosis of brain death. All of these applications depend on knowledge of normative patterns of brain electrical activity, including the predominant frequencies, amplitudes, and degree of coherence.

Surface EEGs are generally recorded from a set of small electrodes glued to the scalp (typically 19 active electrodes),...
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References and Readings

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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Craig Hospital, Rocky Mountain Regional Brain Injury SystemEnglewoodUSA
  2. 2.Moss Rehabilitation Research Institute, Albert Einstein Healthcare NetworkElkins ParkUSA