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Epilepsia partialis continua (EPC) is a form of status epilepticus that is characterized by continuous simple partial seizures and can occur as a manifestation of a variety of underlying pathological processes. Because these seizures typically take onset within or close to motor cortex, the treatment of refractory EPC with resective surgery risks significant postoperative deficits. We describe our experience using ictal recordings obtained intraoperatively during awake craniotomy, in conjunction with direct cortical stimulation mapping, to tailor surgical resections in 2 patients with refractory EPC. Both patients had pan-hemispheric pathologies that made extraoperative recording difficult. Awake craniotomy takes advantage of a unique feature of refractory EPC, namely the near-continuous presence of focal seizure activity. It allows the surgeon to record seizures in the operating room and precisely define the anatomic location of epileptic activity, to resect the seizure focus, and to both visually and electrographically confirm successful cessation of EPC after resection, all within a single operation. We used standard methods of awake craniotomy to finely tailor a cortical resection to the epileptogenic cortex while sparing nearby eloquent motor areas. The precision of awake mapping made this approach safe and effective. The cases we describe demonstrate the role of focal resection in the treatment of EPC. Standard techniques of awake craniotomy have application in the treatment of this challenging problem.


Bradley C Lega, Angus A Wilfong, Ian L Goldsmith, Amit Verma, Daniel Yoshor. Cortical resection tailored to awake, intraoperative ictal recordings and motor mapping in the treatment of intractable epilepsia partialis continua: technical case report. Neurosurgery. 2009 Mar;64(3 Suppl):ons195-6; discussion ons196

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PMID: 19240579

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