Search tips
Search criteria 


Logo of jpnSubmit a ManuscriptEmail AlertsAbout JPNJournal of Psychiatry and Neuroscience
J Psychiatry Neurosci. 2001 March; 26(2): 106–116.
PMCID: PMC1407756

Quantitative electroencephalography in Alzheimer's disease: comparison with a control group, population norms and mental status.


OBJECTIVE: Given that quantitative electroencephalography (EEG) has repeatedly shown excessive slow wave activity in dementia of the Alzheimer type (DAT) that increases with disease progression, we assessed the clinical utility of this tool by comparing various approaches used to assess slowing. DESIGN: Cross-sectional study comparing quantitative EEG data from patients with DAT with normative data from an elderly control group and from EEG norms derived from a large population. PARTICIPANTS: 35 subjects diagnosed with probable DAT and 30 elderly controls. OUTCOME MEASURE: EEG recorded from 21 scalp sites of each patient and elderly control during vigilance-controlled, eyes-closed, resting conditions was spectrally analyzed to yield measures of absolute and relative power in delta, theta, alpha and beta bands and indices of mean alpha band and total band frequency. RESULTS: Group comparisons of raw or age-regressed z-score population normative values yielded different profiles with respect to direction of frequency band changes, regional topography and clinical rating correlations, but both procedures evidenced overall patterns of EEG slowing in DAT. However, both methodologies yielded only modest (75%) classification rates. CONCLUSION: Quantitative EEG remains a valuable research tool but, as yet, an unproven diagnostic tool, for DAT.

Full text

Full text is available as a scanned copy of the original print version. Get a printable copy (PDF file) of the complete article (3.6M), or click on a page image below to browse page by page. Links to PubMed are also available for Selected References.

Images in this article

Click on the image to see a larger version.

Selected References

These references are in PubMed. This may not be the complete list of references from this article.
  • Penttilä M, Partanen JV, Soininen H, Riekkinen PJ. Quantitative analysis of occipital EEG in different stages of Alzheimer's disease. Electroencephalogr Clin Neurophysiol. 1985 Jan;60(1):1–6. [PubMed]
  • Ihl R, Maurer K, Dierks T, Frlich L, Perisic I. Staging in dementia of the Alzheimer type: topography of electrical brain activity reflects the severity of the disease. Psychiatry Res. 1989 Sep;29(3):399–401. [PubMed]
  • Horie T, Koshino Y, Murata T, Omori M, Isaki K. EEG analysis in patients with senile dementia and Alzheimer's disease. Jpn J Psychiatry Neurol. 1990 Mar;44(1):91–98. [PubMed]
  • Soininen H, Partanen J, Päkkönen A, Koivisto E, Riekkinen PJ. Changes in absolute power values of EEG spectra in the follow-up of Alzheimer's disease. Acta Neurol Scand. 1991 Feb;83(2):133–136. [PubMed]
  • Valladares-Neto DC, Buchsbaum MS, Evans WJ, Nguyen D, Nguyen P, Siegel BV, Stanley J, Starr A, Guich S, Rice D. EEG delta, positron emission tomography, and memory deficit in Alzheimer's disease. Neuropsychobiology. 1995;31(4):173–181. [PubMed]
  • Ihl R, Dierks T, Martin EM, Froölich L, Maurer K. Topography of the maximum of the amplitude of EEG frequency bands in dementia of the Alzheimer type. Biol Psychiatry. 1996 Mar 1;39(5):319–325. [PubMed]
  • Chiaramonti R, Muscas GC, Paganini M, Müller TJ, Fallgatter AJ, Versari A, Strik WK. Correlations of topographical EEG features with clinical severity in mild and moderate dementia of Alzheimer type. Neuropsychobiology. 1997;36(3):153–158. [PubMed]
  • Nuwer M. Assessment of digital EEG, quantitative EEG, and EEG brain mapping: report of the American Academy of Neurology and the American Clinical Neurophysiology Society. Neurology. 1997 Jul;49(1):277–292. [PubMed]
  • John ER, Karmel BZ, Corning WC, Easton P, Brown D, Ahn H, John M, Harmony T, Prichep L, Toro A, et al. Neurometrics. Science. 1977 Jun 24;196(4297):1393–1410. [PubMed]
  • Folstein MF, Folstein SE, McHugh PR. "Mini-mental state". A practical method for grading the cognitive state of patients for the clinician. J Psychiatr Res. 1975 Nov;12(3):189–198. [PubMed]
  • McKhann G, Drachman D, Folstein M, Katzman R, Price D, Stadlan EM. Clinical diagnosis of Alzheimer's disease: report of the NINCDS-ADRDA Work Group under the auspices of Department of Health and Human Services Task Force on Alzheimer's Disease. Neurology. 1984 Jul;34(7):939–944. [PubMed]
  • John ER, Prichep LS, Fridman J, Easton P. Neurometrics: computer-assisted differential diagnosis of brain dysfunctions. Science. 1988 Jan 8;239(4836):162–169. [PubMed]
  • John ER, Ahn H, Prichep L, Trepetin M, Brown D, Kaye H. Developmental equations for the electroencephalogram. Science. 1980 Dec 12;210(4475):1255–1258. [PubMed]
  • Gasser T, Bächer P, Möcks J. Transformations towards the normal distribution of broad band spectral parameters of the EEG. Electroencephalogr Clin Neurophysiol. 1982 Jan;53(1):119–124. [PubMed]
  • Yingling CD, Galin D, Fein G, Peltzman D, Davenport L. Neurometrics does not detect 'pure' dyslexics. Electroencephalogr Clin Neurophysiol. 1986 May;63(5):426–430. [PubMed]
  • Alvarez A, Valdes P, Pascual R. EEG developmental equations confirmed for Cuban schoolchildren. Electroencephalogr Clin Neurophysiol. 1987 Oct;67(4):330–332. [PubMed]
  • Matsuura M, Okubo Y, Toru M, Kojima T, He Y, Hou Y, Shen Y, Lee CK. A cross-national EEG study of children with emotional and behavioral problems: a WHO collaborative study in the Western Pacific Region. Biol Psychiatry. 1993 Jul 1;34(1-2):59–65. [PubMed]
  • Leuchter AF, Cook IA, Newton TF, Dunkin J, Walter DO, Rosenberg-Thompson S, Lachenbruch PA, Weiner H. Regional differences in brain electrical activity in dementia: use of spectral power and spectral ratio measures. Electroencephalogr Clin Neurophysiol. 1993 Dec;87(6):385–393. [PubMed]
  • Jennings JR, Wood CC. Letter: The epsilon-adjustment procedure for repeated-measures analyses of variance. Psychophysiology. 1976 May;13(3):277–278. [PubMed]
  • Prichep LS, John ER. QEEG profiles of psychiatric disorders. Brain Topogr. 1992 Summer;4(4):249–257. [PubMed]
  • Knott VJ, Harr A. Assessing the topographic EEG changes associated with aging and acute/long-term effects of smoking. Neuropsychobiology. 1996;33(4):210–222. [PubMed]
  • Dierks T, Ihl R, Frölich L, Maurer K. Dementia of the Alzheimer type: effects on the spontaneous EEG described by dipole sources. Psychiatry Res. 1993 Oct;50(3):151–162. [PubMed]
  • Battistin L, Pizzolato G, Dam M, Ponza I, Borsato N, Zanco PL, Ferlin G. Regional cerebral blood flow study with 99mTc-hexamethyl-propyleneamine oxime single photon emission computed tomography in Alzheimer's and multi-infarct dementia. Eur Neurol. 1990;30(5):296–301. [PubMed]
  • Bertelsen GA, Rebello S, Gulati A. Characteristics of endothelin receptors in the cerebral cortex and spinal cord of aged rats. Neurobiol Aging. 1992 Jul-Aug;13(4):513–519. [PubMed]
  • Ray WJ, Cole HW. EEG alpha activity reflects attentional demands, and beta activity reflects emotional and cognitive processes. Science. 1985 May 10;228(4700):750–752. [PubMed]
  • Schreiter-Gasser U, Gasser T, Ziegler P. Quantitative EEG analysis in early onset Alzheimer's disease: a controlled study. Electroencephalogr Clin Neurophysiol. 1993 Jan;86(1):15–22. [PubMed]
  • McKeith IG, Bartholomew PH, Irvine EM, Cook J, Adams R, Simpson AE. Single photon emission computerised tomography in elderly patients with Alzheimer's disease and multi-infarct dementia. Regional uptake of technetium-labelled HMPAO related to clinical measurements. Br J Psychiatry. 1993 Nov;163:597–603. [PubMed]
  • Rodriguez G, Nobili F, Rocca G, De Carli F, Gianelli MV, Rosadini G. Quantitative electroencephalography and regional cerebral blood flow: discriminant analysis between Alzheimer's patients and healthy controls. Dement Geriatr Cogn Disord. 1998 Sep-Oct;9(5):274–283. [PubMed]
  • Leuchter AF, Spar JE, Walter DO, Weiner H. Electroencephalographic spectra and coherence in the diagnosis of Alzheimer's-type and multi-infarct dementia. A pilot study. Arch Gen Psychiatry. 1987 Nov;44(11):993–998. [PubMed]
  • Leuchter AF, Walter DO. Diagnosis and assessment of dementia using functional brain imaging. Int Psychogeriatr. 1989 Spring;1(1):63–72. [PubMed]
  • Ihl R, Brinkmeyer J, Jänner M, Kerdar MS. A comparison of ADAS and EEG in the discrimination of patients with dementia of the Alzheimer type from healthy controls. Neuropsychobiology. 2000 Jan;41(2):102–107. [PubMed]
  • Szelies B, Mielke R, Herholz K, Heiss WD. Quantitative topographical EEG compared to FDG PET for classification of vascular and degenerative dementia. Electroencephalogr Clin Neurophysiol. 1994 Aug;91(2):131–139. [PubMed]
  • Anderer P, Saletu B, Klöppel B, Semlitsch HV, Werner H. Discrimination between demented patients and normals based on topographic EEG slow wave activity: comparison between z statistics, discriminant analysis and artificial neural network classifiers. Electroencephalogr Clin Neurophysiol. 1994 Aug;91(2):108–117. [PubMed]

Articles from Journal of Psychiatry & Neuroscience : JPN are provided here courtesy of Canadian Medical Association