Outcomes of stereoelectroencephalography following failed epilepsy surgery in children

Document Type

Journal Article

Publication Date



Child's nervous system : ChNS : official journal of the International Society for Pediatric Neurosurgery




Epilepsy surgery; Failed surgery; Pediatrics; Seizures


INTRODUCTION: Stereoelectroencephalography (SEEG) is valuable for delineating the seizure onset zone (SOZ) in pharmacoresistant epilepsy when non-invasive presurgical techniques are inconclusive. Secondary epilepsy surgery after initial failure is challenging and there is limited research on SEEG following failed epilepsy surgery in children. OBJECTIVE: The objective of this manuscript is to present the outcomes of children who underwent SEEG after failed epilepsy surgery. METHODS: In this single-institution retrospective study, demographics, previous surgery data, SEEG characteristics, management, and follow-up were analyzed for pediatric patients who underwent SEEG after unsuccessful epilepsy surgery between August 2016 and February 2023. RESULTS: Fifty three patients underwent SEEG investigation during this period. Of this, 13 patients were identified who had unsuccessful initial epilepsy surgery (24%). Of these 13 patients, six patients (46%) experienced unsuccessful resective epilepsy surgery that targeted the temporal lobe, six patients (46%) underwent surgery involving the frontal lobe, and one patient (8%) had laser interstitial thermal therapy (LITT) of the right insula. SEEG in two thirds of patients (4/6) with initial failed temporal resections revealed expanded SOZ to include the insula. All 13 patients (100%) had a subsequent surgery after SEEG which was either LITT (54%) or surgical resection (46%). After the subsequent surgery, a favorable outcome (Engel class I/II) was achieved by eight patients (62%), while five patients experienced an unfavorable outcome (Engel class III/IV, 38%). Of the six patients with secondary surgical resection, four patients (67%) had favorable outcomes, while of the seven patients with LITT, two patients (29%) had favorable outcomes (Engel I/II). Average follow-up after the subsequent surgery was 37 months ±23 months. CONCLUSION: SEEG following initial failed resective epilepsy surgery may help guide next steps at identifying residual epileptogenic cortex and is associated with favorable seizure control outcomes.