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J Neurosurg. 1987 Apr;66(4):489-99.

Surgical therapy for medically intractable epilepsy.


There has been a recent renewal of interest in surgical therapy for medically intractable epilepsies. Cortical resection and callosotomy are the most widely accepted modes of surgical management. The indications for each of these approaches are reviewed. Although there has been much interest in imaging techniques, including positron emission tomography, to identify epileptogenic zones, identification still depends primarily on the electroencephalogram (EEG). There are several approaches to the evaluation and intraoperative management of patients undergoing cortical resection for temporal lobe epileptogenic zones. These range from selection based on scalp interictal EEG criteria, with resections guided by electrocorticography and functional mapping, to selection based on the location of ictal onset as recorded by chronically implanted depth electrodes, with an anatomically standard resection of the temporal lobe or resection limited to amygdalohippocampectomy. No one approach provides the optimum balance of benefits to risks and costs for all patients. The relative value of the different approaches for various populations of patients with medically intractable partial complex seizures is reviewed. Techniques for minimizing the morbidity of these operations, especially in regard to language and memory, are also discussed, as are the contributions to an understanding of the neurobiology of human epilepsy and human higher functions derived from the surgical therapy of epilepsy.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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