The surgical treatment of epilepsy is one area of neurosurgery where patients can be conclusively cured and have their lives radically changed. Based on the epidemiology (prevalence of 1%) and natural history (20%-30% intractable) of epilepsy, there are likely at least 600,000 surgical candidates in the US1. Weibe et al7 performed a randomized, controlled study in which patients were randomly assigned to a surgical or non-surgical arm; the one-year seizure free rate was 58% in the surgical group and 8% in the group treated medically. In a related study, in a two-year period, 36 epilepsy surgeries were performed, including 29 temporal lobectomies1. Among all patients, 30/36 were seizure-free and 5 almost seizure-free; within the temporal lobectomy subgroup, 27/29 were seizure free and 2/29 almost seizure-free.
"Referral Patterns for Medically Refractory Epilepsy,"
1, Article 1.
Available at: http://jdc.jefferson.edu/jhnj/vol5/iss1/1