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Forward and Inverse Effects of the Complete Electrode Model in Neonatal EEG

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Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)876-884
JournalJournal of Neurophysiology
Issue number3
Early online date16 Nov 2016
Publication statusPublished - Mar 2017
Publication typeA1 Journal article-refereed


This paper investigates finite element method (FEM) based modeling in the context of neonatal electroencephalography (EEG). In particular, the focus lies on electrode boundary conditions. We compare the complete electrode model (CEM) to the point electrode model (PEM), which is the current standard in EEG. In the CEM, the voltage experienced by an electrode is modeled more realistically as the integral average of the potential distribution over its contact surface, whereas the PEM relies on a point value. Consequently, the CEM takes into account the sub-electrode shunting currents which are absent in the PEM. In this study, we aim to find out how the electrode voltage predicted by these two models differ, if standard size electrodes are attached to a head of a neonate. Additionally, we study voltages and voltage variation on electrode surfaces with two source locations: (A) next to the 5-th electrode and (B) directly under the frontal fontanel. A realistic model of a neonatal head including a skull with fontanels and sutures is used. Based on the results, the forward simulation differences between CEM and PEM are in general small, but significant outliers can occur in the vicinity of the electrodes. The CEM can be considered as an integral part of the outer head model. The outcome of this study helps understanding volume conduction of neonatal EEG as it enlightens the role of advanced skull and electrode modeling in forward and inverse computations.

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