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Open access

Bilateral and asymmetrical localization of language function identified by the superselective infusion of propofol in an epilepsy patient with a mild malformation of cortical development: illustrative case

Mayuko Otomo, Shin-ichiro Osawa, Kyoko Suzuki, Kazuo Kakinuma, Kazushi Ukishiro, Hiroyoshi Suzuki, Kuniyasu Niizuma, Norio Narita, Nobukazu Nakasato, and Teiji Tominaga

BACKGROUND

Atypical localization of language function can result in unexpected postsurgical deficits after cortical resection, but it is difficult to predict the risk in the presurgical evaluation. The authors experienced a rare case of the bilateral and independent existence of different components of language function identified by segmented evaluation of anatomical anterior and posterior language areas using the superselective infusion of propofol.

OBSERVATIONS

A 32-year-old right-handed female presented with drug-resistant epilepsy. Comprehensive epilepsy evaluation suggested that the epileptic foci involved the whole left frontal lobe but provided less evidence of structural abnormality. To estimate the extent of functional deterioration likely to be caused by an extended left frontal lobectomy, the authors evaluated segmented cortical function in the ipsi- and contralateral hemispheres by the superselective infusion of propofol into the branches of the intracranial artery. The results revealed bilateral and asymmetrical localization of language function because the patient presented with different components of aphasia in each hemisphere. Based on the authors’ assessment of her functional tolerance, an extended left frontal lobectomy was performed and resulted in neurological deficits within the anticipated range.

LESSONS

An accurate understanding of the correlations between vascular and functional anatomy and the highly specific evaluation of language function provides more advanced presurgical assessment, allowing more tailored planning of cortical resection.

Open access

Stereoelectroencephalography in the setting of a previously implanted responsive neural stimulation device: illustrative case

Dorian M Kusyk, Nicholas Blaney, Timothy Quezada, and Alexander C Whiting

BACKGROUND

Responsive neural stimulation (RNS) is a relatively novel procedure for drug-resistant epilepsy, which involves implantation of a device into the skull and brain. As more devices are implanted, there may be an increasing need to perform intracranial electrocorticography in implant patients with persistent seizures. Given the device location, imaging difficulties with implanted devices, and other technical hurdles, stereoelectroencephalography (SEEG) could be especially challenging. The authors describe the first reported SEEG investigation in a patient with an RNS device, highlighting the technical challenges and clinical data ascertained.

OBSERVATIONS

A 41-year-old male with drug-resistant epilepsy presented several years after a local surgeon had placed an RNS device with two electrodes in the bilateral parieto-occipital lobes. Because of inadequate seizure control, the patient was offered a repeat SEEG investigation to characterize his epilepsy better. Although more technically challenging than a traditional SEEG implantation, the SEEG investigation was successfully performed, which led to a confirmation of bilateral hippocampal seizure onset. The patient underwent repositioning of his RNS leads with a significant decrease in his seizure frequency.

LESSONS

Concurrent implantation of SEEG electrodes in a functioning RNS device can be safely performed and can augment our understanding of a patient’s seizures.

Open access

Myasthenia gravis in a pediatric patient with Lennox-Gastaut syndrome following responsive neurostimulation device implantation: illustrative case

David A Zuckerman, Cameron P Beaudreault, Carrie R Muh, Patricia E McGoldrick, and Steven M Wolf

BACKGROUND

Myasthenia gravis (MG) is an autoimmune disorder in which the postsynaptic acetylcholine receptor of the neuromuscular junction is destroyed by autoantibodies. The authors report a case of MG in a pediatric patient who also suffered from Lennox-Gastaut syndrome (LGS) and is one of a limited number of pediatric patients who have undergone placement of a responsive neurostimulation (RNS) device (NeuroPace).

OBSERVATIONS

A 17-year-old female underwent placement of an RNS device for drug-resistant epilepsy in the setting of LGS. Five months after device placement, the patient began experiencing intermittent slurred speech, fatigue, and muscle weakness. Initially, the symptoms were attributed to increased seizure activity and/or medication side effects. However, despite changing medications and RNS settings, no improvements occurred. Her antiacetylcholine receptor antibodies measured 62.50 nmol/L, consistent with a diagnosis of MG. The patient was then prescribed pyridostigmine and underwent a thymectomy, which alleviated most of her symptoms.

LESSONS

The authors share the cautionary tale of a case of MG in a pediatric patient who was treated with RNS for intractable epilepsy associated with LGS. Although slurred speech, fatigue, muscle weakness, and other symptoms might stem from increased seizure activity and/or medication side effects, they could also be due to MG development.

Open access

Refractory seizures secondary to radiation-induced focal cortical dysplasia/neuronal gigantism: illustrative case

Annabelle Shaffer, Michael Pozin, Sharif Nasr, Paul M Arnold, Fadi Mikhail, Graham Huesmann, and Wael Hassaneen

BACKGROUND

Focal cortical dysplasia is a structural cause of drug-resistant epilepsy commonly identified in childhood. In rare cases, radiation-induced injury has led to radiation-induced cortical dysplasia, also known as “focal neuronal gigantism.”

OBSERVATIONS

The authors present a 53-year-old woman with recurrent status epilepticus events after she had radiation therapy and surgery for a left frontal meningioma several years prior. Imaging revealed findings consistent with radiation necrosis and possible recurrence. The patient’s status epilepticus events required escalating therapies to manage. Scalp electroencephalography indicated that the seizure’s origin was in the left hemisphere. A craniotomy was performed to remove the left frontal lesion, and histopathology was consistent with radiation-induced focal cortical dysplasia/neuronal gigantism. The patient’s seizures ceased following the surgery, and she remains on maintenance antiseizure medications.

LESSONS

Radiation-induced focal cortical dysplasia/neuronal gigantism is an incredibly rare complication of therapy. However, it warrants consideration in the context of radiation necrosis and intractable epilepsy.

Open access

Tandem pediatric neurosurgery: treatment of synostosis and intractable epilepsy. Illustrative case

Ogechukwu Ariwodo, Douglas R Nordli III, Nathan J Ranalli, and Alexandra D Beier

BACKGROUND

Hemispherectomy is a surgical procedure reserved for hemispheric intractable epilepsy. Sagittal craniosynostosis is a congenital disorder treated with open or endoscope-assisted approaches for synostosis correction. These procedures are not commonly performed in the same setting.

OBSERVATIONS

In this report, the authors present a 6-month-old female with sagittal craniosynostosis, hemimegalencephaly, and intractable epilepsy who underwent a left hemispherotomy with open sagittal synostosis correction followed by cranial molding orthosis therapy.

LESSONS

The report highlights the technical nuances of the procedure, but also discusses the possible genetic disorder responsible for both conditions, megalencephaly-capillary malformation syndrome.

Open access

A new strategy for treating drug-resistant focal aware seizures: thalamic specific nuclei deep brain stimulation. Illustrative case

Osvaldo Vilela-Filho, Hélio F. Silva-Filho, Lissa C. Goulart, Paulo C. Ragazzo, and Francisco M. Arruda

BACKGROUND

Focal aware seizures (FASs) are relatively common and frequently pharmaco-resistant. If the seizure onset zone (SOZ) is in eloquent cortical areas, making resective surgery risky and inadvisable, deep brain stimulation (DBS) of the anterior nucleus of the thalamus, which is efficacious in less than half of the cases, has been the main alternative. New targets should be searched to address this deficiency. The present study aims to determine if DBS of different thalamic specific nuclei can modulate the abnormal electrical activity of the SOZ located in their respective cortical projection areas. Herein, the authors present the first patient in an ongoing trial.

OBSERVATIONS

A 60-year-old female patient presented with 25-year history of pharmaco-resistant focal aware visual seizures frequently evolving to focal impaired awareness seizures. The SOZ was in the right occipital lobe (positron emission tomography-computed tomography/video electroencephalography). Magnetic resonance imaging was normal. She underwent ipsilateral lateral geniculate nucleus (LGN) DBS procedure. After a 24-month follow-up, seizure frequency decreased by 97%, improving quality of life and daily functioning without complications.

LESSONS

This is the first time the LGN has been targeted in humans. The results support the hypothesis that led to this study. This strategy represents a paradigm shift in the way of treating pharmaco-resistant FASs not amenable to resective surgery.

Open access

Radiofrequency ablation during stereoelectroencephalography: from diagnostic tool to therapeutic intervention. Illustrative case

Demitre Serletis, Juan Bulacio, Justin Bingaman, Elham Abushanab, Stephen P. Harasimchuk, Richard Rammo, Silvia Neme-Mercante, and William Bingaman

BACKGROUND

Radiofrequency thermocoagulation (RFTC) during intracranial stereoelectroencephalography (sEEG) was first described as a safe technique for creating lesions of epileptic foci in 2004. Since that time, the method has been applied as a diagnostic and/or palliative intervention. Although widely practiced in European epilepsy surgical programs, the technique has not been popularized in the United States given the lack of Food and Drug Administration (FDA)–approved technologies permitting safe usage of in situ sEEG electrodes for this purpose.

OBSERVATIONS

The authors present a case report of a young female patient with refractory left neocortical temporal lobe epilepsy undergoing sEEG electrode implantation, who underwent sEEG-guided RFTC via a stereotactic temperature-sensing pallidotomy probe. Although used as a diagnostic step in her workup, the patient has remained seizure-free for nearly 18 months.

LESSONS

The use of in situ sEEG electrodes for RFTC remains limited in the United States. In this context, this case highlights a safe alternative and temporizing approach to performing diagnostic sEEG-guided RFTC, using a temperature-sensing pallidotomy probe to create small, precise stereotactic lesions. The authors caution careful consideration of this technique as a temporary work-around solution while also highlighting the rising need for new FDA-approved technologies for safe RFTC through in situ temperature-sensing sEEG electrodes.

Open access

Severe hyperglycorrhachia and status epilepticus after endoscopic aqueductoplasty: illustrative case

Anand A. Dharia, Ahmad Masri, Jay F. Rilinger, and Christian B. Kaufman

BACKGROUND

While hypoglycorrhachia is observed and managed frequently, there are few reports in the literature of clinically significant hyperglycorrhachia after neurosurgery. Understanding the effects and management of severe hyperglycorrhachia is important to the neurosurgeon and neurocritical care teams who care for patients in these rare scenarios.

OBSERVATIONS

The authors present the case of a 3-month-old male with congenital hydrocephalus who faced profound hyperglycorrhachia and status epilepticus after an endoscopic aqueductoplasty using an irrigant composed of lactated Ringer’s solution with dextrose 5% in water. A multidisciplinary approach was developed to monitor and treat the patient’s seizures and cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) osmolytes.

LESSONS

This case provides several learning opportunities for understanding CSF physiology, pathogenesis of common brain injuries related to osmotic shifts and inflammatory states, as well as clinical management of hyperglycorrhachia. It also reiterates the significance of meticulous intraoperative assessment to avoid preventable medical errors.

Open access

Focal drug-resistant temporal lobe epilepsy associated with an ipsilateral anterior choroidal artery aneurysm: illustrative case

H. Westley Phillips, Shivani D. Rangwala, Joanna Papadakis, David J. Segar, Melissa Tsuboyama, Anna L. R. Pinto, Joseph P. Harmon, Sulpicio G. Soriano, Carlos J. Munoz, Joseph R. Madsen, Alfred P. See, and Scellig S. Stone

BACKGROUND

The occurrence of both an intracranial aneurysm and epilepsy, especially drug-resistant epilepsy (DRE), is rare. Although the overall incidence of aneurysms associated with DRE is unclear, it is thought to be particularly infrequent in the pediatric population. Surgical ligation of the offending aneurysm has been reported in conjunction with resolving seizure activity, although few cases have cited a combined approach of aneurysm ligation and resection of an epileptogenic focus.

OBSERVATIONS

We present the case of a 14-year-old female patient with drug-resistant temporal lobe epilepsy and an ipsilateral supraclinoid internal carotid artery aneurysm. Seizure semiology, electroencephalography monitoring, and magnetic resonance imaging all indicated a left temporal epileptogenic focus, in addition to an incidental aneurysm. The authors recommended a combined surgery involving resection of the temporal lesion and surgical clip ligation of the aneurysm. Near-total resection and successful ligation were achieved, and the patient has remained seizure free since surgery at 1 year postoperatively.

LESSONS

In patients with focal DRE and an adjacent intracranial aneurysm, a combined surgical approach involving both resection and surgical ligation can be used. Several surgical timing and neuroanesthetic considerations should be made to ensure the overall safety and efficacy of this procedure.

Open access

Infraclavicular de novo placement of a responsive neurostimulator for a patient with eloquent glioma-associated epilepsy: illustrative case

Ahmad R. Masri, Bailey R. Yekzaman, Bradley J. Estes, Christopher S. Park, Patrick Landazuri, and Michael Kinsman

BACKGROUND

The authors present a 50-year-old female with high-grade glioma involving the motor cortex as the cause of her drug-resistant epilepsy (DRE). Responsive neurostimulation (RNS) was chosen for epilepsy treatment. Due to concerns regarding the generator impeding the regular imaging surveillance required for treatment and monitoring of her glioma, surgeons placed the internal pulse generator (IPG) within an infraclavicular chest pocket.

OBSERVATIONS

Implantation of the RNS device and IPG within the infraclavicular pocket was uneventful. However, both subdural and depth electrodes were used and connected to the IPG, and subdural electrodes are considerably shorter than depth electrodes (37 vs 44 cm). The shorter strip leads presumably generated significant tension, leading to fracture of the leads. Therefore, surgery was repeated using only depth electrodes for more length and less tension. The device has good-quality electrocorticography signals that continue to be used for device programming. The seizure burden was reduced, and quality of life improved for the patient.

LESSONS

The RNS system with infraclavicular IPG placement reduced the seizure burden and improved the quality of life of a patient with glioma-associated epilepsy. Surgeons may consider the infraclavicular location as an alternative site for implantation for RNS candidates who require recurrent intracranial magnetic resonance imaging.