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Peak and averaged bicoherence for different EEG patterns during general anaesthesia

Author(s): Pritchett Stacey | Zilberg Eugene | Xu Zheng | Myles Paul | Brown Ian | Burton David

Journal: BioMedical Engineering OnLine
ISSN 1475-925X

Volume: 9;
Issue: 1;
Start page: 76;
Date: 2010;
Original page

Abstract Background Changes in nonlinear neuronal mechanisms of EEG generation in the course of general anaesthesia have been extensively investigated in research literature. A number of EEG signal properties capable of tracking these changes have been reported and employed in anaesthetic depth monitors. The degree of phase coupling between different spectral components is a marker of nonlinear EEG generators and is claimed to be an important aspect of BIS. While bicoherence is the most direct measure of phase coupling, according to published research it is not directly used in the calculation of BIS, and only limited studies of its association with anaesthetic depth and level of consciousness have been published. This paper investigates bicoherence parameters across equal band and unequal band bifrequency regions, during different states of anaesthetic depth relating to routine clinical anaesthesia, as determined by visual inspection of EEG. Methods 41 subjects scheduled for day surgery under general anaesthesia were recruited into this study. EEG bicoherence was analysed using average and smoothed-peak estimates calculated over different regions on the bifrequency plane. Statistical analysis of associations between anaesthetic depth/state of consciousness and bicoherence estimates included linear regression using generalised linear mixed effects models (GLMs), ROC curves and prediction probability (Pk). Results Bicoherence estimates for the δ_θ region on the bifrequency plane were more sensitive to anaesthetic depth changes compared to other bifrequency regions. Smoothed-peak bicoherence displayed stronger associations than average bicoherence. Excluding burst suppression and large transients, the δ_θ peak bicoherence was significantly associated with level of anaesthetic depth (z = 25.74, p < 0.001 and R2 = 0.191). Estimates of Pk for this parameter were 0.889(0.867-0.911) and 0.709(0.689-0.729) respectively for conscious states and anaesthetic depth levels (comparable BIS estimates were 0.928(0.905-0.950) and 0.801(0.786-0.816)). Estimates of linear regression and areas under ROC curves supported Pk findings. Bicoherence for eye movement artifacts were the most distinctive with respect to other EEG patterns (average |z| value 13.233). Conclusions This study quantified associations between deepening anaesthesia and increase in bicoherence for different frequency components and bicoherence estimates. Increase in bicoherence was also established for eye movement artifacts. While identified associations extend earlier findings of bicoherence changes with increases in anaesthetic drug concentration, results indicate that the unequal band bifrequency region, δ_θ, provides better predictive capabilities than equal band bifrequency regions.

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