Spatial normalization of brain images, a prerequisite for voxel based morphometry analysis, may account for the large variability of the volumetric data in medication overuse headache (MOH); possibly because this disease concerns patients differing on both sex and age, and hence with different brain size and shape.
The present study aimed at providing a subject-based analysis of macrostructure using a native space volumes segmentation (Freesurfer), and microstructure using a region of interest (ROI: i.e. hippocampus) tractography approach in MOH patients.
The results show that MOH patients had decreased volumes of left hemisphere temporal gyri (temporal superior, fusiform) and occipital middle gyrus, together with an increased volume of the left inferior (temporal) lateral ventricle. The left temporal volume was negatively correlated with depression score and medication dependence parameters. Seed-based tractography of the hippocampus revealed a decreased number of reconstructed fibers passing through the left hippocampus.
To our knowledge, these alterations have not been described with methods involving brain normalization, and they indicate that left hemisphere temporal areas, including the hippocampus, may play a role in MOH pathophysiology.
Trial registration number NCT00833209. Registered 29 January 2009
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- Brain structural investigation and hippocampal tractography in medication overuse headache: a native space analysis
G. Di Scala
- BioMed Central