The purpose of this study was to identify the complications associated with the inferior temporal gyrus approach to anterior mesial temporal lobe resection for temporal lobe epilepsy.
This retrospective study examined complications experienced by 483 patients during the 3 months after surgery. All surgeries were performed during 1998–2012 by the senior author (F.L.V.).
A total of 13 complications (2.7%) were reported. Complications were 8 delayed subdural hematomas (1.6%), 2 superficial wound infections (0.4%), 1 delayed intracranial hemorrhage (0.2%), 1 small lacunar stroke (0.2%), and 1 transient frontalis nerve palsy (0.2%). Three patients with subdural hematoma (0.6%) required readmission and surgical intervention. One patient (0.2%) with delayed intracranial hemorrhage required readmission to the neuroscience intensive care unit for observation. No deaths or severe neurological impairments were reported. Among the 8 patients with subdural hematoma, 7 were older than 40 years (87.5%); however, this finding was not statistically significant (p = 0.198).
The inferior temporal gyrus approach to mesial temporal lobe resection is a safe and effective method for treating temporal lobe epilepsy. Morbidity and mortality rates associated with this procedure are lower than those associated with other neurosurgical procedures. The finding that surgical complications seem to be more common among older patients emphasizes the need for early surgical referral of patients with medically refractory epilepsy.