Outcome of epilepsy surgery in the first three years of life

Epilepsia. 1999 May;40(5):560-5. doi: 10.1111/j.1528-1157.1999.tb05557.x.


Purpose: We analyzed our experience over a 6-year period with early-childhood patients who had undergone epilepsy surgery, and investigated the surgical outcomes.

Method: We reviewed the medical records of 23 children, ages 0-3 years, who underwent epilepsy surgery between 1991 and 1996.

Results: Twenty children had partial seizures; two had infantile spasms; and one had generalized tonic-clonic seizures at onset. The mean age at onset of seizures was 4.7 months, and the mean age at time of surgery was 15.3 months. A total of 32 operations (21 focal cortical resections and 11 hemispherectomies) was performed. Five of 12 children with seizures secondary to a neuronal migration disorder had reoperations, including three who ultimately underwent complete hemispherectomy. The pathology consisted of hemimegalencephaly in three patients, focal cortical dysplasia (FCD) in eight, tuberous sclerosis in one, Sturge-Weber syndrome (SWS) in five, infarction in two, low-grade glioma (LGG) in three, and post-herpes simplex virus encephalitis (HSE) in one. The follow-up period ranged from 1 to 6.5 years (mean, 3.2 years) from patients' last operation. The seizure outcome according to Engel's criteria was class I in 12 patients, class II in three, class III in six and class IV in two.

Conclusions: Seizure outcomes after surgery were less favorable in infants with FCD than in those with SWS and LGG. Seizure outcome for the patients with hemispherectomies was excellent, compared with those who had focal cortical resections.

MeSH terms

  • Age Factors
  • Brain / surgery*
  • Cerebral Cortex / surgery
  • Child, Preschool
  • Epilepsy / surgery*
  • Female
  • Follow-Up Studies
  • Humans
  • Infant
  • Male
  • Treatment Outcome