Multilobar resection in magnetic resonance imaging (MRI)-negative drug-resistant epilepsy warrants attention because they account for up to one third of MRI-negative epilepsy surgery. Despite their high prevalence, data are sparse, and the risk/benefit ratio continues to be debated. The present study investigated the postoperative seizure outcomes in this especially challenging subgroup.
We retrospectively analyzed the data of 4 consecutive patients with 3T MRI-negative findings and drug-resistant focal epilepsy who had undergone multilobar epilepsy surgery at our institution.
The mean age at first surgery was 28.5 years (range, 14-48); 1 patient required 2 consecutive reoperations. The final resection was in the frontotemporal and temporo-parieto-occipital regions in 2 patients each. Histopathological examination revealed mild malformations of cortical development in 2 patients and focal cortical dysplasia type Ia and type IIa in 1 patient each. At the last follow-up examination (median, 3.3 years; range, 1-11), 2 patients were completely seizure free (Engel class Ia), 1 patient had experienced some disabling seizures after surgery but had been free of disabling seizures for 2 years at the last follow-up examination (Engel class Ic), and 1 patient had experienced worthwhile improvement (Engel class IIb) and had been seizure free for 1 year at the last follow-up examination. No surgical complications developed.
Our results have demonstrated that multilobar epilepsy surgery is effective for lasting seizure control for selected 3T MRI-negative candidates, leading to favorable outcomes for all 4 of our patients. Comprehensive multimodal preoperative evaluation is a prerequisite for postoperative success. Reevaluation should be considered for patients with seizure recurrence, because reoperation could be especially beneficial for selected patients who have not responded to an initially limited resection.