J Korean Med Assoc.  2006 Mar;49(3):253-271.

Epilepsy Surgery I

  • 1Department of Neurology, Sungkyunkwan University School of Medicine, Samsung Medical Center, Korea. sbhong@smc.samsung.co.kr, jey1220@freechal.com


Epilepsy is a chronic neurological disorder manifesting recurrent unprovoked epileptic seizures. About 20~30% of epilepsy patients are resistant to antiepileptic medications. These patients suffer from high risk of physical injury, unemployment, marital problem, and psychological stress. Epilepsy surgery is the firstly recommended treatment modality for the patients with medically intractable epilepsy. Presurgical evaluation is the most important process for performing epilepsy surgery. The ultimate goal of the presurgical evaluation in patients with medically refractory partial seizures is the localization of the epileptogenic zone and the resection of which is also both necessary and sufficient to render the patient seizure-free. The localization of the epileptogenic zone derives from a hierarchical synthesis of localizing data independently obtained from clinical, electrographic, neuroimaging, and neuropsychological examination. In addition, closely related to the goal of localizing the epileptogenic zone is the significant need for anticipating the risks of functional deficits that could derive from the surgical resection. Mesial temporal lobe epilepsy (TLE) is the best candidate for epilepsy surgery. Anterior temporal lobectomy with amygdalohippocampectomy is a surgical treatment method for mesial TLE and its seizure-free rate (SFR) is 60~90%, whereas one-year SFR of antiepileptic drug treatment for mesial TLE is 10~20%. Cortisectomy is a surgical method for extratemporal epilepsy and its SFR is about 40~70%. Corpus callosotomy is a partial or complete division of corpus callosum for preventing seizure propagations between right and left hemispheres and is effective for controlling atonic seizures. The variation of postsurgical seizure outcomes is related to the qualities of epilepsy surgery program, presurgical evaluation and surgical techniques. For the good surgical outcome, the epilepsy surgery program should include neurologist, neurosurgeon, neuropsychologist, neuro-radiologist and neuro-nuclear medicine specialist for a comprehensive team approach.


Intractable epilepsy; Presurgical evaluation; Epilepsy surgery; Anterior temporal Lobectomy with amygdalohippocampectomy; Cortisectomy; Corpus callosotomy

MeSH Terms

Anterior Temporal Lobectomy
Corpus Callosum
Epilepsy, Temporal Lobe
Nervous System Diseases
Stress, Psychological
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