Epilepsy surgery outcome in children with focal epilepsy due to tuberous sclerosis complex

Neuropediatrics. 2002 Oct;33(5):255-61. doi: 10.1055/s-2002-36740.


Tuberous sclerosis complex (TSC) is frequently associated with focal epilepsy due to cerebral tubers. Seizures are the first symptoms in most patients with brain involvement. These epilepsies are frequently severe, drug-resistant and may have a negative impact on the child's global development. Although most epilepsies are multicentric, these patients may be candidates for epilepsy surgery, if it is possible to determine a leading epileptogenic tuber. Nine patients with TSC were examined with long-term video-EEG monitoring, different neuroimaging techniques and neuropsychological tests. A main epileptogenic tuber could be identified in all of our patients. We found good correlations between neuroimaging and EEG. Surgery was performed in eight patients. Seizure outcome was good in all. Two patients became seizure-free, one patient had a single prolonged seizure five days postoperatively, four patients had a significant seizure reduction of more than 75 % and one patient had a seizure reduction of more than 50 % after surgery without additional neurologic deficits. In conclusion, patients with TSC and drug-resistant epilepsy may benefit from epilepsy surgery with reduction in frequency and severity of seizures as well as improved mental and behavioural development leading to a better quality of life. In view of recent developments in functional and metabolic imaging, primary epileptogenic lesions will be more easily detectable in patients with diffuse brain involvement in TSC and surgical treatment may be more specifically applied at an earlier age to a selected subgroup of patients with this disorder.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Child
  • Child, Preschool
  • Electroencephalography
  • Epilepsies, Partial / etiology*
  • Epilepsies, Partial / physiopathology
  • Epilepsies, Partial / surgery*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Infant
  • Infant, Newborn
  • Magnetic Resonance Imaging
  • Male
  • Outcome Assessment, Health Care*
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Tuberous Sclerosis / complications*
  • Tuberous Sclerosis / physiopathology
  • Tuberous Sclerosis / surgery*