This study aimed to examine the background electroencephalography (EEG) in children with childhood absence epilepsy, a condition whose presentation has strong developmental links. EEG hallmarks of absence seizure activity are widely accepted and there is recognition that the bulk of inter-ictal EEG in this group is normal to the naked eye. This multidisciplinary study aimed to use the normalized total wavelet entropy (NTWS) (Signal Processing 83 (2003) 1275) to examine the background EEG of those patients demonstrating absence seizure activity, and compare it with children without absence epilepsy. This calculation can be used to define the degree of order in a system, with higher levels of entropy indicating a more disordered (chaotic) system. Results were subjected to further statistical analyses of significance. Entropy values were calculated for patients versus controls. For all channels combined, patients with absence epilepsy showed (statistically significant) lower entropy values than controls. The size of the difference in entropy values was not uniform, with certain EEG electrodes consistently showing greater differences than others.
Physica A: Statistical Mechanics and Its Applications Vol. 356, no. 1, p. 184-189