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Imaging electrical conductivity distribution of the human head using evoked fields and potentials

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2008
Yurtkölesi, Mustafa
In the human brain, electrical activities are created due to the body functions. These electrical activities create potentials and magnetic fields which can be monitored elec- trically (Electroencephalography - EEG) or magnetically (Magnetoencephalography - MEG). Electrical activities in human brain are usually modeled by electrical dipoles. The purpose of Electro-magnetic source imaging (EMSI) is to determine the position, orientation and strength of dipoles. The first stage of EMSI is to model the human head numerically. In this study, The Finite Element Method (FEM) is chosen to han- dle anisotropy in the brain. The second stage of EMSI is to solve the potentials and magnetic fields for an assumed dipole configuration (forward problem). Realistic con- ductivity distribution of human head is required for more accurate forward problem solutions. However, to our knowledge, conductivity distribution for an individual has not been computed yet. The aim of this thesis study is to investigate the feasibility of a new approach to update the initially assumed conductivity distribution by using the evoked potentials and fields acquired during EMSI studies. This will increase the success of source localization problem, since more realistic conductivity distribution of the head will be used in the forward problem. This new method can also be used as a new imaging modality, especially for inhomogeneities where the conductivity value deviates. In this thesis study, to investigate the sensitivity of measurements to conductivity perturbations, a FEM based sensitivity matrix approach is used.