Ictal onset patterns of subdural intracranial electroencephalogram in children: How helpful for predicting epilepsy surgery outcome?

Aliza S. Alter, Ravi Dhamija, Tiffani Leigh McDonough, Stephie Shen, Danielle K. McBrian, Arthur M. Mandel, Guy M. McKhann, Neil A. Feldstein, Cigdem I. Akman*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

10 Scopus citations


Aims: We aimed to classify ictal onset patterns (IOPs) in pediatric patients undergoing intracranial electroencephalography (IEEG) to guide surgery for refractory epilepsy. We aimed to determine if morphology of IOPs can predict surgical outcome. Materials and Methods: We performed a retrospective review of pediatric patients who underwent epilepsy surgery guided by subdural IEEG from 2007 to 2016. IEEG seizures were reviewed by a blinded epileptologist. Data was collected on outcomes. Results: Twenty-three patients with 784 seizures were included. Age at seizure onset was 0.2–11 (mean 4.3, standard deviation 3.2) years. Age at time of IEEG was 4–20 (mean 13.5, standard deviation 4.4) years. Five distinct IOPs were seen at seizure onset: A) Low voltage fast activity (LVFA) with spread to adjacent electrodes (n = 7 patients, 30%), B) Burst of LVFA followed by electrodecrement (n = 12 patients, 52%), C) Burst of rhythmic spike waves (RSW) followed by electrodecrement (n = 9 patients, 39%), D) RSW followed by LVFA (n = 7 patients, 30%), E) Rhythmic spikes alone (n = 10 patients, 43%). Twelve patients (52%) had the same IOP type with all seizures. When the area of the IOP was resected, 14 patients (61%) had Engel I outcomes. Patients who had LVFA seen within their predominant IOP type were more likely to have good surgical outcomes (odds ratio 7.50, 95% confidence interval 1.02–55.0, p = 0.05). Patients who had only one IOP type were more likely to have good outcomes than patients who had multiple IOP types (odds ratio 12.6, 95% confidence interval 1.19–134, p = 0.04). Patients who had LVFA in their predominant IOP type were older than patients who did not have LVFA (mean age 15.0 vs. 9.9 years, p = 0.02). Conclusions: LVFA at ictal onset and all seizures having the same IOP morphology are associated with increased likelihood of surgical success in children, but LVFA is less common in children who are younger at the time of IEEG.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)44-52
Number of pages9
JournalEpilepsy Research
StatePublished - Jan 2019


  • Electroencephalography
  • Pediatric epilepsy
  • Presurgical evaluation
  • Seizure onset pattern

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neurology
  • Clinical Neurology


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