A comparison is made between the results of standard intracarotid speech amytal testing and a new methodology, echoplanar blood-oxygen-level-dependent functional magnetic resonance imaging (BOLD fMRI), in patients undergoing presurgical evaluation for intractable epilepsy. Of the 15 patients entered in the study, all had fMRIs while performing a verbal fluency task. Twelve of these patients also underwent standard intracarotid sodium amytal testing for speech and memory. Results of the fMRIs as compared to the intracarotid speech amytal testing are discussed, including agreement and disagreement between studies. Potential reasons for poor concordance are discussed, including complexity of the verbal fluency task, and motion and technical issues in MRI scan acquisition and data analysis.

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