Neuronal migration disorders: a contribution of modern neuroimaging to the etiologic diagnosis of epilepsy

Can J Neurol Sci. 1991 Nov;18(4 Suppl):580-7. doi: 10.1017/s0317167100032753.


Computed tomography and magnetic resonance imaging enable the identification of neuronal migration disorders during life. Several specific syndromes have been identified and early diagnosis of previously unrecognized entities is now possible. We report 51 patients with imaging. Thirty-two had a single widespread cortical dysplastic lesion. Twenty-eight had focal corticectomies. From a pathological standpoint, these encompassed focal cortical dysplasia (14 cases) and forme fruste of tuberous sclerosis (10 cases). These two groups of patients were indistinguishable from the clinical and radiological standpoint. In only two was the MRI examination normal. In addition, there were 10 with bilateral perisylvian dysplasia, four with diffuse cortical dysplasia or the "double cortex" syndrome, three with hemimegalencephaly, one with megalencephaly, and one with nodular neuronal heterotopia. The electroclinical and imaging findings led to the development of specific surgical strategies for the alleviation of the intractable seizures in each of these radiologically-defined syndromes.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Amobarbital
  • Brain Diseases / complications*
  • Brain Diseases / diagnosis
  • Brain Diseases / surgery
  • Cerebral Cortex / abnormalities
  • Cerebral Cortex / pathology
  • Child
  • Child, Preschool
  • Electroencephalography
  • Epilepsy / diagnosis*
  • Epilepsy / etiology
  • Epilepsy / surgery
  • Humans
  • Infant
  • Magnetic Resonance Imaging
  • Neurons / pathology*
  • Status Epilepticus / pathology
  • Status Epilepticus / surgery
  • Tomography, X-Ray Computed


  • Amobarbital