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May 11, 1994

The Electroencephalogram: Its Patterns and Origins

Author Affiliations

Washington, DC

JAMA. 1994;271(18):1456. doi:10.1001/jama.1994.03510420094043

Just when you thought there was nothing left to be written about the electroencephalogram (EEG), John Barlow brings a provocative new model to define and study brain waves. This is not a basic or clinical text in electroencephalography, however, but a book about science, and the student or resident in neurology or psychiatry should know that before purchasing it. With his "extrema-slopes" hypothesis, Barlow explores the origins of EEG oscillations from a new theoretical perspective that has a number of fascinating physiological and technical implications and some opportunities for new research.

Although very well written, illustrated, and organized, this is not always easy reading. The physics, physiology, math, and electronics can all be individually demanding, even more so when combined. It will appeal to the technically oriented encephalographer or investigator and to many biomedical engineers, but to relatively few clinicians or residents. While clinical implications of the new model are

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