Intractable epilepsy patients with ulegyria could be candidates for resective surgery. Complete resection of ulegyria in the epileptogenic hemisphere is associated with favorable seizure outcome, although the risk of postoperative functional deficits is higher. The authors evaluated the extent of resection and postsurgical outcomes in epilepsy patients with ulegyria who underwent intracranial electroencephalography (iEEG) monitoring prior to resection to clarify the efficacy of iEEG-guided partial resection of ulegyria.
Ten consecutive epilepsy patients with ulegyria (7 males and 3 females, age range at surgery 7–34 years) underwent iEEG prior to resective surgery between 2011 and 2017 with a minimum follow-up of 12 months (range 12–72 months). The diagnosis of ulegyria was based on the typical pattern of cortical atrophy especially at the bottom of the sulcus on MRI. An iEEG study was indicated after comprehensive preoperative evaluations, including high-field MRI, long-term video-EEG, magnetoencephalography, and FDG-PET. The resection planning was based on iEEG analysis. Total lesionectomy was not always performed, as preservation of cortical function was prioritized.
Ulegyria was seen in the occipital and/or parietal lobe in 9 patients and bilaterally in 5 patients. Ictal EEG onset involved the temporal neocortex in 6 patients. Intracranial electrodes were implanted unilaterally in all except 1 patient with bilateral lesions. The extent of MRI lesion was covered by the electrodes. Seizure onset zones (SOZs) and irritative zones (IZs) were identified in all patients. SOZs and IZs were completely resected in 8 patients but were only partially removed in the remaining 2 patients because the eloquent cortices and the epileptogenic zones overlapped. Ulegyria of the epileptogenic side was totally resected in 1 patient. Seizure freedom was achieved in 4 patients, including 3 after partial lesionectomy. Extended resection of the temporal neocortex was performed in 4 patients, although postoperative seizure freedom was achieved only in 1 of these patients. Visual field deficit was seen in 4 patients. Three of 5 patients with bilateral lesions achieved seizure freedom after unilateral resective surgery.
Intracranial EEG–guided partial lesionectomy provides a reasonable chance of postoperative seizure freedom with a lower risk of functional deficits. Patients with bilateral ulegyria should not be excluded from consideration as surgical candidates.