Vol 50, No 1 (2016)

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Diffusion tensor tractography imaging in pediatric epilepsy – A systematic review

Marta Szmuda1, Tomasz Szmuda2, Janusz Springer3, Marianna Rogowska2, Agnieszka Sabisz4, Mirosława Dubaniewicz4, Maria Mazurkiewicz-Bełdzińska1
DOI: 10.1016/j.pjnns.2015.10.003
Neurol Neurochir Pol 2016;50(1):1-6.



Recent years brought several experimental and clinical reports applying diffusion tensor tractography imaging (DTI) of the brain in epilepsy. This study was aimed to evaluate current evidence for adding the DTI sequence to the standard diagnostic magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) protocol in pediatric epilepsy.

Material and methods

Rapid and qualitative systematic review (RAE, Rapid Evidence Assessment), aggregating relevant studies from the recent 7 years. The PubMed database was hand searched for records containing terms “tractography AND epilepsy.” Only studies referring to children were included; studies were rated using “final quality of evidence.”


Out of 144 screened records, relevant 101 were aggregated and reviewed. The synthesis was based on 73 studies. Case-control clinical studies were the majority of the material and comprised 43.8% of the material. Low ‘confirmability’ and low ‘applicability’ referred to 18 and 17 articles (29.5% and 27.9%), respectively. The sufficient quality of evidence supported performing DTI in temporal lobe epilepsy, malformations of cortical development and prior to a neurosurgery of epilepsy.


The qualitative RAE provides an interim estimate of the clinical relevance of quickly developing diagnostic methods. Based on the critical appraisal of current knowledge, adding the DTI sequence to the standard MRI protocol may be clinically beneficial in selected patient groups with childhood temporal lobe epilepsy or as a part of planning for an epilepsy surgery.

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Neurologia i Neurochirurgia Polska