Comput Biol Med. 2023 Sep 6;165:107468. doi: 10.1016/j.compbiomed.2023.107468. Online ahead of print.
OBJECTIVE: To determine the presence and potential utility of independent high-frequency activity recorded from scalp electrodes in the electroencephalogram (EEG) of newborns.
METHODS: We compare interburst intervals and continuous activity at different frequencies for EEGs retrospectively recorded at 256 Hz from 4 newborn groups: 1) 36 preterms (<32 weeks’ gestational age, GA); 2) 12 preterms (32-37 weeks’ GA); 3) 91 healthy full terms; 4) 15 full terms with hypoxic-ischemic encephalopathy (HIE). At 4 standard frequency bands (delta, 0.5-3 Hz; theta, 3-8 Hz; alpha, 8-15 Hz; beta, 15-30 Hz) and 3 higher-frequency bands (gamma1, 30-48 Hz; gamma2, 52-99 Hz; gamma3, 107-127 Hz), we compared power spectral densities (PSDs), quantitative features, and machine learning model performance. Feature selection and further machine learning methods were performed on one cohort.
RESULTS: We found significant (P < 0.01) differences in PSDs, quantitative analysis, and machine learning modelling at the higher-frequency bands. Machine learning models using only high-frequency features performed best in preterm groups 1 and 2 with a median (95% confidence interval, CI) Matthews correlation coefficient (MCC) of 0.71 (0.12-0.88) and 0.66 (0.36-0.76) respectively. Interburst interval-detector models using both high- and standard-bandwidths produced the highest median MCCs in all four groups. High-frequency features were largely independent of standard-bandwidth features, with only 11/84 (13.1%) of correlations statistically significant. Feature selection methods produced 7 to 9 high-frequency features in the top 20 feature set.
CONCLUSIONS: This is the first study to identify independent high-frequency activity in newborn EEG using in-depth quantitative analysis. Expanding the EEG bandwidths of analysis has the potential to improve both quantitative and machine-learning analysis, particularly in preterm EEG.