BACKGROUND: The optimal extent of resection for surgical treatment of lesional epilepsy is a controversial issue.
OBJECTIVE: For patients with mesial temporal lobe lesions visible on magnetic resonance imaging, we compared the surgical outcome of selective lesionectomy with that of standard anterior temporal lobectomy (ATL) and amygdalohippocampectomy.
METHODS: We conducted a retrospective analysis of the seizure outcome of 40 patients treated for lesional mesial temporal lobe epilepsy between 1993 and 2008. Before 2006, patients were managed by ATL (n = 29) and from 2006 onward, by selective lesionectomy via the transsylvian-transcisternal approach (n = 11).
RESULTS: The postoperative seizure-free rates for the 2 groups were comparable: 93% (27/29) for the ATL group and 91% (10/11) for the selective lesionectomy group (P = .814). In both groups, patients with persistent seizures commonly showed incomplete lesion resection, with complete resection often improving seizure outcome. Postoperative visual field defects were more common in the ATL group (21%) than in the selective lesionectomy group (0%) (P = .102).
CONCLUSION: Transsylvian-transcisternal selective lesionectomy is an effective and safe therapeutic modality in children with lesional mesial temporal lobe epilepsy. Completeness of resection is an important variable for seizure control regardless of surgical modality.