Cortical visual evoked potentials recorded after optic tract near field stimulation during GPi-DBS in non-cooperative patients

Andrea Landi, David Pirillo, Roberto Cilia, Angelo Antonini, Erik P. Sganzerla

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Object: Neurophysiologic monitoring during deep brain stimulation (DBS) interventions in the globus pallidus internum (Gpi) for the treatment of Parkinson's disease or primary dystonia is generally based upon microelectrode recordings (MER); moreover, MER request sophisticated technology and high level trained personnel for a reliable monitoring. Recordings of cortical visual evoked potentials (CVEPs) obtained after stimulation of the optic tract may be a potential option to MER; since optic tract lies just beneath the best target for Gpi DBS, changes in CVEPs during intraoperative exploration may drive a correct electrode positioning. Patients and methods: Cortical VEPs from optic tract stimulation (OT C-CEPs) have been recorded in seven patients during GPi-DBS for the treatment of Parkinson's disease and primary dystonia under general sedation. OT C-VEPs were obtained after near-field monopolar stimulation of the optic tract; recording electrodes were at the scalp. Cortical responses after optic tract versus standard visual stimulation were compared. Results: After intraoperative near-field OT stimulation a biphasic wave, named N40-P70, was detected in all cases. N40-P70 neither change in morphology nor in latency at different depths, but increased in amplitude approaching the optic tract. The electrode tip was positioned just 1 mm above the point where OT-CVEPs showed the larger amplitude. No MERs were obtained in these patients; OT CVEPs were the only method to detect the Gpi before positioning the electrodes. Conclusions: OT CVEPs seem to be as reliable as MER to detail the optimal target in Gpi surgery: in addition they are less expensive, faster to perform and easier to decode.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)119-122
Number of pages4
JournalClinical Neurology and Neurosurgery
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Feb 2011


  • Cortical visual evoked potentials
  • DBS
  • Gpi
  • Parkinson's disease

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Clinical Neurology
  • Surgery


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