Objective: To define the optimal analysis protocol for semiautomatic quantification of spike index (SI) in continuous spikes and waves in sleep (CSWS). Methods: Ten overnight EEGs (nine patients) with abundant spiking were used to quantify SI with a previously published semiautomatic quantification based on spike detection with BESA software. We studied (i) dependency of SI on maximal interspike interval (maxISI) defining the continuous discharge, (ii) sensitivity of SI to variations in the spike search protocol, and (iii) stability of SI over time. Finally, the semiautomatic method was compared with the quantification based on visual scoring by two neurophysiologists. Results: MaxISI of 3. s appeared to yield the best combination of sensitivity and stability in SI quantification. The SI of the first hour of sleep did not differ significantly from the SI of the whole night. Mean error of the semiautomatic method compared to visual scoring was only seven percentage units. Conclusions: Semiautomatic quantification of SI functions well with maxISI of 3. s, and the first hour of sleep represents the whole night SI with a clinically relevant accuracy. Significance: This method opens a possibility for objective quantification of near-continuous epileptiform spiking during sleep, and it supports the use of shorter epochs for quantitative assessment of CSWS.
- Automated EEG analysis
- Electrical status epilepticus during sleep
- Spike index