Techniques and applications of sphenoidal recording

Don W. King, Elson L. So, Richard Marcus, Brian B. Gallagher

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

40 Scopus citations


Sphenoidal electrodes were introduced in the late 1940s and early 1950s to record EEG activity from the inferior mesial temporal region. They are inserted percutaneously beneath the zygomatic arch to rest in the vicinity of the foramen ovale. They are safe, easy to insert, and well tolerated for up to 3 weeks. Artifacts are less prominent than with other types of basal electrodes. Complications are rare. Sphenoidal electrodes are superior to scalp electrodes in detecting interictal epileptiform discharges and ictal EEG patterns from the inferior mesial temporal lobe. Clinical indications include: documentation of epileptiform activity in patients with partial complex seizures in whom scalp recording has been inconclusive; diagnosis of episodes of uncertain mechanism; and localization of an epileptogenic focus in patients being evaluated for temporal lobectomy.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)51-65
Number of pages15
JournalJournal of Clinical Neurophysiology
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 1986


  • EEG
  • Partial complex seizures
  • Sphenoidal electrodes
  • Temporal lobe

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Physiology
  • Neurology
  • Clinical Neurology
  • Physiology (medical)


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