Journal Mobile Options
Table of Contents
Vol. 52, No. 2, 2005
Issue release date: August 2005
Neuropsychobiology 2005;52:71–76

Influence of Age, Gender, Health Status, and Depression on Quantitative EEG

Morgan M.L. · Witte E.A. · Cook I.A. · Leuchter A.F. · Abrams M. · Siegman B.
Behavioral Pharmacology Laboratory, UCLA Neuropsychiatric Institute, Quantitative EEG Laboratory, UCLA Neuropsychiatric Institute and Hospital, and Department of Psychiatry and Biobehavioral Sciences, David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA, Los Angeles, Calif., USA

Individual Users: Register with Karger Login Information

Please create your User ID & Password

Contact Information

I have read the Karger Terms and Conditions and agree.

To view the fulltext, please log in

To view the pdf, please log in


Quantitative electroencephalography (QEEG) has shown increasing utility in assessing brain function in clinical research studies of depression. QEEG findings may be influenced by a variety of factors other than the presence of depression, including age, gender, depression severity, and physical health status. Many of these factors have not been systematically evaluated. We therefore examined QEEG measures in 104 subjects with depression and normal controls to determine the influence of these factors. We examined QEEG power as well as cordance, a QEEG measure that has a stronger association with cerebral perfusion than conventional QEEG measures. Prefrontal cordance in the theta band has been associated with the pathophysiology of depression and response to treatment. We found that prefrontal cordance and relative power in the theta band were unaffected by age, gender, severity of depression, and health status, while prefrontal absolute power was higher in women than men. All of these measures were different from global measures of absolute and relative power, which were influenced by age, gender, and health status. These findings suggest that prefrontal cordance in depressed patients is not significantly affected by factors of age, gender, severity of depression, or physical illness. Global measures of power, and to a lesser extent prefrontal absolute power, must be interpreted with regard to confounding factors of age, gender, physical illness, and severity of depression.

Copyright / Drug Dosage

Copyright: All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be translated into other languages, reproduced or utilized in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical, including photocopying, recording, microcopying, or by any information storage and retrieval system, without permission in writing from the publisher or, in the case of photocopying, direct payment of a specified fee to the Copyright Clearance Center.
Drug Dosage: The authors and the publisher have exerted every effort to ensure that drug selection and dosage set forth in this text are in accord with current recommendations and practice at the time of publication. However, in view of ongoing research, changes in goverment regulations, and the constant flow of information relating to drug therapy and drug reactions, the reader is urged to check the package insert for each drug for any changes in indications and dosage and for added warnings and precautions. This is particularly important when the recommended agent is a new and/or infrequently employed drug.
Disclaimer: The statements, opinions and data contained in this publication are solely those of the individual authors and contributors and not of the publishers and the editor(s). The appearance of advertisements or/and product references in the publication is not a warranty, endorsement, or approval of the products or services advertised or of their effectiveness, quality or safety. The publisher and the editor(s) disclaim responsibility for any injury to persons or property resulting from any ideas, methods, instructions or products referred to in the content or advertisements.


  1. Kwon JS, Youn T, Jung HY: Right hemisphere abnormalities in major depression: Quantitative electroencephalographic findings before and after treatment. J Affect Disord 1996;40:169–173.
  2. Debener S, Beauducel A, Nessler D, Brocke B, Heilemann H, Kayser J: Is resting anterior EEG alpha asymmetry a trait marker for depression? Findings for healthy adults and clinically depressed patients. Neuropsychobiology 2000;41:31–37.
  3. Saletu B, Brandstatter N, Metka M, Stamenkovic M, Anderer P, Semlitsch HV, Heytmanek G, Huber J, Grunberger J, Linzmayer L, Kurz C, Decker K, Binder G, Knogler W, Koll B: Hormonal, syndromal and EEG mapping studies in menopausal syndrome patients with and without depression as compared with controls. Maturitas 1996;23:91–105.
  4. Leuchter AF, Uijtdehaage SH, Cook IA, O’Hara R, Mandelkern M: Relationship between brain electrical activity and cortical perfusion in normal subjects. Psychiatry Res 1999;90:125–140.
  5. Cook IA, Leuchter AF, Witte E, Abrams M, Uijtdehaage SHJ, Stubbeman W, Rosenberg-Thompson S, Anderson-Hanley C: Neurophysiologic predictors of treatment response to fluoxetine in major depression. Psychiatry Res 1999;85:263–273.
  6. Cook IA, Leuchter AF, Morgan M, Witte E, Stubbeman WF, Abrams M, Rosenberg S, Uijtdehaage SH: Early changes in prefrontal activity characterize clinical responders to antidepressants. Neuropsychopharmacology2002;27:120–131.
  7. Duffy FH, Albert MS, McAnulty G, Garvey AJ: Age-related differences in brain electrical activity of healthy subjects. Ann Neurol 1984;16:430–438.
  8. Leuchter AF, Daly MD, Thompson SR, Abrams M: Prevalence and significance of electroencephalographic abnormalities in patients with suspected organic mental syndromes. J Am Geriatr Soc 1993;41:605–611.
  9. Niedermeyer E: The EEG in old age; in Niedermeyer E, Lopes da Silva F (eds): Electroencephalography, Basic Principles, Clinical Application, and Related Fields. Baltimore, Urban and Schwarzenberg, 1987, pp 301–309.
  10. Pozzi D, Petracchi M, Sabe L, Golimstock A, Garcia H, Starkstein S: Quantified electroencephalographic correlates of neuropsychological deficits in Alzheimer’s disease. J Neuropsychiatry Clin Neurosci 1995;7:61–67.
  11. Kaszniak AW, Garron DC, Fox JH, Bergen D, Huckman M: Cerebral atrophy, EEG slowing age, education, and cognitive functioning in suspected dementia. Neurology 1979;29:1273–1279.
  12. Williamson PC, Merskey H, Morrison S, Rabheru K, Fox H, Wands K, Wong C, Hachinski V: Quantitative electroencephalographic correlates of cognitive decline in normal elderly subjects. Arch Neurol 1990;47:1185–1188.
  13. Pozzi D, Golimstock A, Petracchi M, Garcia H, Starkstein S: Quantified electroencephalographic changes in depressed patients with and without dementia. Biol Psychiatry 1995;38:677–683.
  14. American Psychiatric Association: Diagnostic and Statistical Manual for Mental Disorders, ed 4. Washington, American Psychiatric Association Press, 1994.
  15. Hamilton M: Development of a rating scale for primary depressive illness. Br J Soc Psychol 1967;6:278–296.
  16. Miller MD, Paradis CF, Houck PR, Mazumdar S, Stack JA, Rifai AH, Mulsant B, Reynolds CF 3rd: Parting chronic medical illness burden in geropsychiatric practice and research: Application of the cumulative illness rating scale. Psychiatry Res 1992;41:237–248.
  17. Leuchter AF, Cook IA, Lufkin RB, Dunkin J, Newton TF, Cummings JL, Mackey JK, Walter DO: Cordance: A new method for assessment of cerebral perfusion and metabolism using quantitative electroencephalography. Neuroimage 1994;1:208–219.
  18. Leuchter AF, Uijtdehaage SH, Cook IA, O’Hara R, Mandelkern M: Relationship between brain electrical activity and cortical perfusion in normal subjects. Psychiatry Res 1999;90:125–140.
  19. Hjorth B: An on-line transformation of EEG scalp potentials into orthogonal source derivations. Electroencephalogr Clin Neurophysiol 1975;39:526–530.
  20. Cook IA, O’Hara R, Uijtdehaage SH, Mandelkern M, Leuchter AF: Assessing the accuracy of topographic EEG mapping for determining local brain function. Electroencepha logr Clin Neurophysiol 1998;107:408–414.
  21. Cook IA, Leuchter AF, Uijtdehaage SH, Osato S, Holschneider DH, Abrams M, Rosenberg-Thompson S: Altered cerebral energy utilization in late life depression. J Affect Disord 1998;49:89–99.
  22. Leuchter AF, Cook IA, Uijtdehaage SH, Dunkin J, Lufkin RB, Anderson-Hanley C, Abrams M, Rosenberg-Thompson S, O’Hara R, Simon SL, Osato S, Babaie A: Brain structure and function and the outcomes of treatment for depression. J Clin Psychiatry 1997;58:22–31.
  23. Cook IA, Leuchter AF: Prefrontal changes and treatment response prediction in depression. Semin Clin Neuropsychiatry 2001;6:113–120.
  24. Leuchter AF, Cook IA, Witte EA, Morgan ML, Abrams M: Changes in brain function of depressed subjects during treatment with placebo. Am J Psychiatry 2002;159:122–129.
  25. 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;87:385–393.
  26. Mitchell KW, Howe JW, Spencer SR: Visual evoked potentials in the older population: Age and gender effects. Clin Phys Physiol Measure 1987;8:317–324.
  27. Nissen C, Feige B, Voderholzer U, Berger M, Riemann D: Gender-dependent age effects on sleep EEG power density in major depression. Somnologie 2002;6:7–12.

    External Resources

  28. Dijk DJ, Beersma DG, Bloem GM: Sex differences in the sleep EEG of young adults: Visual scoring and spectral analysis. Sleep 1989;12:500–507.
  29. Goncalves SI, de Munck JC, Verbunt JP, Bijma F, Heethaar RM, Lopes da Silva F: In vivo measurement of the brain and skull resistivities using an EIT-based method and realistic models for the head. IEEE Trans Biomed Eng 2003;50:754–767.
  30. Chauveau N, Franceries X, Doyon B, Rigaud B, Morucci JP, Celsis P: Effects of skull thickness, anisotropy, and inhomogeneity on forward EEG/ERP computations using a spherical three-dimensional resistor mesh model. Hum Brain Mapp 2004;21:86–97.
  31. Woodruff DS, Kramer DA: EEG alpha slowing, refractory period, and reaction time in aging. Exp Aging Res 1979;5:279–292.
  32. McEvoy LK, Pellouchoud E, Smith ME, Gevins A: Neurophysiological signals of working memory in normal aging. Brain Res Cogn Brain Res 2001;11:363–376.
  33. Kolev V, Yordanova J, Basar-Eroglu C, Basar E: Age effects on visual EEG responses reveal distinct frontal alpha networks. Clin Neurophysiol 2002;113:901–910.
  34. Glass A, Butler SR, Carter JC: Hemispheric asymmetry of EEG alpha activation: Effects of gender and familial handedness. Biol Psychol 1984;19:169–187.
  35. Brenner RP, Ulrich RF, Reynolds CF 3rd: EEG spectral findings in healthy, elderly men and women – Sex differences. Electroencephalogr Clin Neurophysiol 1995;94:1–5.
  36. Kline JP, Allen JJ, Schwartz GE: Is left frontal brain activation in defensiveness gender specific? J Abnorm Psychol 1998;107:149–153.
  37. Miller A, Fox NA, Cohn JF, Forbes EE, Sherrill JT, Kovacs M: Regional patterns of brain activity in adults with a history of childhood-onset depression: Gender differences and clinical variability. Am J Psychiatry 2002;159:934–940.

Pay-per-View Options
Direct payment This item at the regular price: USD 38.00
Payment from account With a Karger Pay-per-View account (down payment USD 150) you profit from a special rate for this and other single items.
This item at the discounted price: USD 26.50