BrainLine Military

A Service of

Turn off text only

Page Utilities


The MEG Shows Areas of the Brain

The MEG Shows Areas of the Brain "Talking" to Each Other

Click on any phrase to play the video at that point.
The MEG is magnetoencephalography system, and that looks at the actual firing of the axons, so, the wiring of the brain. But, it looks at the firing of the neurons. The neurons do the thinking, and the axons just connect the neurons together. And, you can actually see in real time where you'll process a signal in 1 area of the brain, and then send a signal to another area of the brain and then maybe to a 3rd area of the brain. So, in other words, you've got to see an image— say if you're trying to do a memory task— you'e got to see the task, you've got to process the task, and then you've got to store it in memory. So, you see 3 different areas fire almost in real time. And, that's a very unique thing. The MRI is much slower—it relies upon blood flow, but the MEG is a very quick instrument where we can actually see the areas talk to each other. And, you can see how these areas could be disrupted. Any one of these axons, any one of these areas of wiring could be damaged from traumatic brain injury and stop that, or interrupt it, or slow it down so that when you used to be able to process a memory task very quickly, before your traumatic brain injury, now that area of wiring is damaged, so you might still be able to do it, but you do it on a slower time scale.

show transcriptShow transcript | Print transcript

Neuroimaging the brain with a MEG can show, in real time, how damage to the brain can interrupt, slow, or stop communication from one part of the brain to other parts.

See more videos with Dr. Riedy.


Produced by Victoria Tilney McDonough, Brian King, and Jared Schaubert, BrainLine.

Gerard Riedy, MD, PhDGerard Riedy, MD, PhD, a neuroradiologist with a background in biochemistry and imaging research, serves as the chief of neuroimaging for the National Intrepid Center of Excellence.

The contents of BrainLine Military (the “Web Site”), such as text, graphics, images, information obtained from the Web Site’s licensors and/or consultants, and other material contained on the Web Site (collectively, the “Content”) are for informational purposes only. The Content is not intended to be a substitute for medical, legal, or other professional advice, diagnosis, or treatment.

Specifically, with regards to medical issues, always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay in seeking it because of something you have read on the Web Site. If you think you may have a medical emergency, call your doctor or 911 immediately. The Web Site does not recommend or endorse any specific tests, physicians, products, procedures, opinions, or other information that may be mentioned on the Web Site. Reliance on any information provided by the Web Site or by employees, volunteers or contractors or others associated with the Web Site and/or other visitors to the Web Site is solely at your own risk.


There are currently no comments for this article


BrainLine Footer

Javascript is disabled. Please be aware that some parts of the site may not function as expected!