The object of this study was to evaluate surgical outcome in a select group of patients with medically refractory epilepsy who had undergone corpus callosotomy combined with bilateral subdural electroencephalography (EEG) electrode placement as the initial step in multistage epilepsy surgery.
A retrospective chart review of 18 children (ages 3.5–18 years) with medically refractory symptomatic generalized or localization-related epilepsy was undertaken. A corpus callosotomy with subdural bihemispheric EEG electrode placement was performed as the initial step in multistage epilepsy surgery. All of the patients had tonic and atonic seizures; 6 patients also experienced complex partial seizures. All of the patients had frequent generalized epileptiform discharges as well as multifocal independent epileptiform discharges on surface EEG monitoring. Most of the patients (94%) had either normal (44%) MR imaging studies of the brain or bihemispheric abnormalities (50%). One patient had a suspected unilateral lesion (prominent sylvian fissure).
Of the 18 patients who underwent corpus callosotomy and placement of subdural strips and grids, 12 progressed to further resection based on localizing data obtained during invasive EEG monitoring. The mean patient age was 10.9 years. The duration of invasive monitoring ranged from 3 to 14 days, and the follow-up ranged from 6 to 70 months (mean 35 months). Six (50%) of the 12 patients who had undergone resection had an excellent outcome (Engel Class I or II). There were no permanent neurological deficits or deaths.
The addition of invasive monitoring for patients undergoing corpus callosotomy for medically refractory epilepsy may lead to the localization of surgically amenable seizure foci, targeted resections, and improved seizure outcomes in a select group of patients typically believed to be candidates for palliative surgery alone.