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Nonlinearity in Normal Human EEG: Cycles, temporal asymmetry, nonstationarity and randomness, not chaos

Milan Palus
Santa Fe Institute, 1399 Hyde Park Road
Santa Fe, NM 87501, USA; and
Institute of Computer Science, Academy of Sciences of the Czech Republic
Pod vodárenskou vezí 2, 182 07 Prague 8, Czech Republic


Two-hour vigilance and sleep EEG recordings from five healthy volunteers were analyzed using a method for identifying nonlinearity and chaos, which combines the redundancy -- linear redundancy approach with the surrogate data technique. A nonlinear component in the EEG was detected, however, inconsistent with the hypothesis of low-dimensional chaos. A possibility that a temporally asymmetric process may underlie or influence the EEG dynamics was indicated. A process that merges nonstationary nonlinear deterministic oscillations with randomness is proposed for an explanation of observed properties of the analyzed EEG signals. Taking these results into consideration, the use of dimensional and related chaos-based algorithms in quantitative EEG analysis is critically discussed.

Biological Cybernetics Vol. 75 No. 5 (1996) 389-396

Milan Palus
January 1997