Supratentorial cavernous angiomas and epileptic seizures: Preoperative course and postoperative outcome

Marina Casazza, Giovanni Broggi, Angelo Franzini, Giuliano Avanzini, Roberto Spreafico, Maurizio Bracchi, Maria Consuelo Valentini

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


OBJECTIVE: Patients operated on for supratentorial cavernous angiomas were studied to define the incidence and the course of seizures in their clinical history. Electroclinical and neuroradiological data were correlated with the location of cavernomas. The impact of lesionectomy on the outcome of seizures was evaluated. METHODS: Preoperative clinical data on the history of the seizures, semeiology, incidence, severity, and response to antiepileptic drugs were analyzed. The location of the cavernomas, revealed by magnetic resonance imaging, was correlated with electroencephalographic and clinical data. Postoperative clinical and neuroradiological data were evaluated, with particular consideration to the outcome of the seizures, antiepileptic drug withdrawal, and the completeness of the lesion excision. RESULTS: A higher incidence of severe epilepsy was observed in the patients with mesiotemporal and cortical angiomas. In most of the patients (78.7%), a good concordance between the site of the lesion and the electroclinical data was found. The complete removal of the lesion led to a favorable outcome, with discontinuation of antiepileptic drugs achieved in one-quarter of the patients. CONCLUSION: A high percentage of patients with cortical cavernomas had epileptic seizures. They often presented with chronic intractable epilepsy (44.7% in our series). In cases of good concordance between the electroclinical data and the location of the angioma, complete lesionectomy led to the disappearance of seizures. Removal of the hemosiderin ring did not correlate with better outcome. Preoperative ictal scalp recordings to assess the topographic relationship between the cavernoma and the epileptic seizures could improve outcome, which suggests different surgical strategies (lesionectomy versus enlarged resection) in patients without a clear-cut concordance between the site of the lesion and the ictal semeiology.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)26-34
Number of pages9
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Jul 1996


  • Antiepileptic drugs
  • Cavernous angioma
  • Lesionectomy
  • Partial seizures

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Clinical Neurology
  • Surgery


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