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The aim of this study was to evaluate the usefulness of 123I-iomazenil (IMZ) single photon emission computed tomography (SPECT) for the pre-surgical identification of epileptogenic areas in patients with temporal lobe epilepsy and to compare the results with those of 123I-IMP SPECT and 18Fluorodeoxyglucose positron emission tomography (FDG PET).We examined seven patients with medically refractory temporal lobe epilepsy (five men and two women; mean age, 28 years) with no remarkable findings on magnetic resonance imaging. Before surgery, IMZ SPECT, IMP SPECT and FDG PET were all performed in the interictal state. Then, visual assessment and region-of-interest (ROI) analysis were performed on each image. Final definitions of the epileptogenic areas were made by electrocorticography and histopathology.By IMZ SPECT, a decreased IMZ uptake in the ipsilateral temporal lobe was found in all patients, while a similar decrease in the contralateral temporal lobe was also found in one patient. In comparison to IMP SPECT, the extent of the abnormal area on IMZ SPECT was equal to that on IMP SPECT in one patient while it was more restricted to the epileptogenic area in five patients. In comparison to FDG PET, the extent of the abnormal area on IMZ SPECT was equal to that on FDG PET in three patients while it was more restricted in the epileptogenic area in four patients. In ROI analysis, decreases of IMZ, IMP and FDG uptake were observed in the epileptogenic area, although they were not statistically significant.IMZ SPECT was considered to be useful for pre-surgical determination of the epileptogenic areas in temporal lobe epilepsy with no remarkable MRI findings, and it was also found to be superior to IMP SPECT and FDG PET for this purpose.