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Study - "Long-term outlook for epilepsy surgery good"

16 June, 2005

A new study shows that the long-term outlook for people who have epilepsy surgery is good, even 30 years after the operation.

Published in the journal Neurology,
the study examined 48 people who had a temporal lobectomy an average of
nearly 30 years previously. The patients or their families were
questioned about whether they had experienced seizures at one year
after the surgery, and at five, 10, and 30 years after the surgery.

At
30 years, 14 people were free of seizures and taking no epilepsy drugs
and 10 people were free of seizures while taking epilepsy medication.
Those who had seizures within the first year after surgery were least
likely to be free of seizures in the future.

Lead researcher Dr William H Theodore of the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke commented:

'Few
studies have looked at the long-term prognosis for epilepsy surgery. We
found that 50 per cent of the patients were free of seizures 30 years
after the surgery.

'These results suggest a good prognosis for long-term seizure control after temporal lobectomy.'