Mesial temporal lobe seizures may activate thermoregulatory mechanisms in humans: An infrared study of facial temperature

Sridhar Sunderam, Ivan Osorio

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

17 Scopus citations

Abstract

Facial temperature Tf, an important link in cerebral thermoregulation and an ignored index of autonomic activity, was studied in three patients with mesial temporal epilepsy. Sets of infrared images were obtained automatically during seizures and also hourly, round-the-clock. For each patient, scan sets were sorted into: (1) ictal; (2) interictal with negligible motion; and (3) interictal with motion. Comparisons of mean, variance, and trend in each scan set among these groups showed considerable variability. However, significant trends in Tf occurred (P < 0.05) in two-thirds of seizures in one patient, three-fourths in another, and two-ninths in the third, consisting of steady decreases in Tf beginning at peak seizure intensity Rmax and continuing into the postictus. Maximal ictal Tf was greater than interictal Tf (P < 0.05), but it negatively correlated with Rmax in two subjects. The ictal changes in Tf, which may have a homeostatic role, suggest activation of thermoregulatory mechanisms during mesial temporal seizures.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)399-406
Number of pages8
JournalEpilepsy and Behavior
Volume4
Issue number4
DOIs
StatePublished - Aug 2003

Keywords

  • Autonomic
  • Infrared imaging
  • Seizure
  • Skin temperature
  • Thermography

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neurology
  • Clinical Neurology
  • Behavioral Neuroscience

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