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Giulia Cossu, Mahmoud Messerer and Roy Thomas Daniel

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Mahmoud Messerer, Giulia Cossu, Roy Thomas Daniel and Emmanuel Jouanneau

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Pablo Gonzalez-Lopez, Giulia Cossu, Etienne Pralong, Matias Baldoncini, Mahmoud Messerer and Roy Thomas Daniel


Anterior quadrant disconnection represents a safe surgical option in well-selected pediatric patients with a large frontal lobe lesion anterior to the motor cortex. The understanding of the anatomy of the white matter tracts connecting the frontal lobe with the rest of the cerebrum forms the basis of a safe and successful disconnective surgery. The authors explored and illustrated the relevant white matter tracts sectioned during each surgical step using fiber dissection techniques.


Five human cadaveric hemispheres were dissected to illustrate the frontal connections in the 3 planes. The dissections were performed from lateral to medial, medial to lateral, and ventral to dorsal to describe the various tracts sectioned during the 4 steps of this surgery, namely the anterior suprainsular window, intrafrontal disconnection, anterior callosotomy, and frontobasal disconnection.


At the beginning of each surgical step, the U fibers were cut. During the anterior suprainsular window, the superior longitudinal fasciculus (SLF), the uncinate fasciculus, and the inferior fronto-occipital fasciculus (IFOF) were visualized and sectioned, followed by sectioning of the anterior limb of the internal capsule. During the intrafrontal disconnection, the SLF was cut, along with the corona radiata. At the medial surface the cingulum was sectioned. The anterior callosotomy disconnected the anterior third of the body of the callosum, the genu, and the rostrum. The frontobasal disconnection addressed the last remaining fibers connecting the frontal lobe with the rest of the hemisphere, namely the anterior limb of the anterior commissure.


The anterior peri-insular quadrantotomy aims at effectively treating children with large lesions of the frontal lobe anterior to the motor cortex. A precise understanding of the gyral anatomy of this lobe along with the several white matter connections is crucial to avoid motor complications and to ensure complete disconnection.

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Giulia Cossu, Sebastien Lebon, Margitta Seeck, Etienne Pralong, Mahmoud Messerer, Eliane Roulet-Perez and Roy Thomas Daniel

Refractory frontal lobe epilepsy has been traditionally treated through a frontal lobectomy. A disconnective technique may allow similar seizure outcomes while avoiding the complications associated with large brain resections. The aim of this study was to describe a new technique of selective disconnection of the frontal lobe that can be performed in cases of refractory epilepsy due to epileptogenic foci involving 1 frontal lobe (anterior to the motor cortex), with preservation of motor function. In addition to the description of the technique, an illustrative case is also presented.

This disconnective procedure is divided into 4 steps: the suprainsular window, the anterior callosotomy, the intrafrontal disconnection, and the frontobasal disconnection. The functional neuroanatomy is analyzed in detail for each step of the surgery. It is important to perform cortical and subcortical electrophysiological mapping to guide this disconnective procedure and identify eloquent cortices and intact neural pathways.

The authors describe the case of a 9-year-old boy who presented with refractory epilepsy due to epileptogenic foci localized to the right frontal lobe. MRI confirmed the presence of a focal cortical dysplasia of the right frontal lobe. A periinsular anterior quadrant disconnection (quadrantotomy) was performed. The postoperative period was uneventful, and the patient was in Engel seizure outcome Class I at the 3-year follow-up. A significant cognitive gain was observed during follow-up.

Periinsular anterior quadrantotomy may thus represent a safe technique to efficiently treat refractory epilepsy when epileptogenic foci are localized to 1 frontal lobe while preserving residual motor functions.