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Knitting artifact
  1. E S Papathanasiou,
  2. P Myrianthopoulou,
  3. S S Papacostas
  1. Department of Clinical Neurophysiology, The Cyprus Institute of Neurology & Genetics, Nicosia, Cyprus
  1. Correspondence to:
 E Papathanasiou, Department of Clinical Neurosciences, The Cyprus Institute of Neurology & Genetics, 6 International Airport Avenue, P.O. Box 23462, Nicosia 1683, Cyprus; 
 neurophycing.ac.cy

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Artifacts are recorded signals that are non-cerebral in origin1 and may be either physiological, due to body activities, or non-physiological, which arise from either external electrical interference or internal electrical malfunctioning of the recording system.

We describe here the first known case of artifact generation resulting from a patient knitting during a video EEG recording. In the figure, apparent spikes or sharply contoured slow waves are seen phase reversing at T3 and T4. On video, these changes are seen to coincide with the patient transferring a stitch from one knitting needle to the other. These sharp transients were also seen on separate occasions at Cz, P3, T4, and other derivations.

No eye blinks or gross movements of the body by the patient were seen during these changes. One hypothesis might be that the wool being knitted by the patient causes a build up of static electricity either on the knitting needles or on the wool itself. During the transfer of the stitch from one needle to the other, the tapping of the needles together may cause the release of this static electricity and allow it be recorded on the EEG.


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EEG showing knitting artifact, representing as spikes with a maximum at T3 and T5. AC27 and AC28 represent the left and right sphenoidal electrodes, respectively. AC23 and AC24 are the left upper canthus and right lower canthus electrodes, respectively, for EOG recording. The AC25–AC26 derivation is ECG recording.

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