Transparahippocampal selective amygdalohippocampectomy in children and adolescents: Efficacy of the procedure and cognitive morbidity in patients

S. Robinson, T. S. Park, L. B. Blackburn, B. F.D. Bourgeois, S. T. Arnold, W. E. Dobson

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53 Scopus citations


Object. Unilateral resection of the hippocampus and amygdala can be used to treat medically intractable mesial temporal lobe seizures. To date seizure outcome and the extent of cognitive morbidity have been unknown in children following the transparahippocampal variation of selective amygdalohippocampectomy (TSA), which prompted the present prospective study. Methods. Preoperative examinations and outcomes in 22 consecutive children and adolescents who underwent TSA were studied. Cognitive and psychological morbidity were assessed using standard neuropsychological instruments. The authors evaluated relationships between seizure control and cognitive morbidity and 13 and nine clinical variables, respectively. Seizure control was achieved in 11 (65%) of 17 patients (> 2 years follow up). Among 13 clinical variables, the only preoperative finding that had a significant bearing on seizure control was the presence of unilateral hypometabolism, which could be observed on [18F]fluorodeoxyglucose-positron emission tomography scans (p < 0.001). Patients with seizure control showed significant improvements in verbal and full scale intelligence quotients (both p = 0.05). Patients with longer preoperative durations of seizures exhibited more cognitive impairment that persisted postoperatively. Cognitive outcome analysis based on nine clinical factors revealed no significant difference in cognitive parameters postoperatively, except that significant improvement occurred in rote verbal memory scores among patients who underwent right-sided TSA (p = 0.01). Individually, 81% of the children achieved significant improvement in at least one of seven cognitive parameters, and 52% had stable or improved scores in all parameters. Conclusions. The results indicate that TSA is a safe effective approach for the treatment of medically intractable mesial temporal lobe seizures in children with minimum effect on cognitive morbidity. Given that the literature suggests that children suffer progressive cognitive morbidity from persistent seizures, the results of this study support early surgical intervention for this group of children.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)402-409
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of neurosurgery
Issue number3
StatePublished - 2000


  • Amygdalohippocampectomy
  • Children
  • Cognition
  • Complex partial seizure
  • Psychological outcome
  • Temporal lobe epilepsy


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