OBJECTIVE: To introduce a new technique for co-registration of Magnetoencephalography (MEG) with magnetic resonance imaging (MRI). We compare the accuracy of a new bite-bar with fixed fiducials to a previous technique whereby fiducial coils were attached proximal to landmarks on the skull.
METHODS: A bite-bar with fixed fiducial coils is used to determine the position of the head in the MEG co-ordinate system. Co-registration is performed by a surface-matching technique. The advantage of fixing the coils is that the co-ordinate system is not based upon arbitrary and operator dependent fiducial points that are attached to landmarks (e.g. nasion and the preauricular points), but rather on those that are permanently fixed in relation to the skull.
RESULTS: As a consequence of minimizing coil movement during digitization, errors in localization of the coils are significantly reduced, as shown by a randomization test. Displacement of the bite-bar caused by removal and repositioning between MEG recordings is minimal ( approximately 0.5 mm), and dipole localization accuracy of a somatosensory mapping paradigm shows a repeatability of approximately 5 mm. The overall accuracy of the new procedure is greatly improved compared to the previous technique.
CONCLUSIONS: The test-retest reliability and accuracy of target localization with the new design is superior to techniques that incorporate anatomical-based fiducial points or coils placed on the circumference of the head.