A quantitative EEG and MRI analysis of intermittent temporal slowing in the elderly

Thomas Krøigård*, Sisse Dahl Christensen, Hans Høgenhaven

*Corresponding author for this work

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Objective: Whereas the correlation between diffuse slowing of EEG activity and neurodegenerative diseases such as Alzheimer's disease is well established, intermittent slowing over the temporal regions, which is a frequent finding in the elderly, does not have a specific clinical correlate. In this study, we compared quantitative EEG parameters between patients with temporal slowing with no signs of neurological disease and controls to evaluate cortical function in the temporal lobes and other cerebral regions. We also compared the width of the temporal lobes on magnetic resonance imaging (MRI). Methods: Mean dominant frequency and relative power in delta, theta, alpha, and beta frequency bands were examined in 20 patients older than 60 years with intermittent temporal slowing and 20 age-matched controls without significant lesions on MRI or medical conditions known to affect the EEG. Furthermore, the correlation between the frequency of temporal slowing and the mean dominant frequency and the width of the medial temporal lobes on MRI were examined. Results: Mean dominant frequency and the relative power in the beta frequency band was lower in patients with temporal slowing than in controls in all of the cortical regions examined. No significant correlation was found between the frequency of slowing and the mean dominant frequency. There was no significant difference in the width of the medial temporal lobes. Conclusions: Intermittent temporal slowing was correlated with diffusely reduced mean dominant frequency and a shift in relative power to lower frequency bands. Significance: The results suggest that subclinical diffuse cerebral pathology may be present in subjects with intermittent temporal slowing, but prospective studies including tests of cognitive function, cerebral perfusion, metabolic status, and advanced neuroimaging should be conducted.

Original languageEnglish
JournalClinical Neurophysiology Practice
Pages (from-to)114-119
Publication statusPublished - 2018


  • Ageing
  • Electroencephalography
  • Slowing
  • Temporal lobe


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