Background This case series describes the technical considerations and effectiveness of ‘endovascular embolic hemispherectomy’ for the treatment of medically intractable seizures in neonates and young infants with hemimegalencephaly (HME) and in whom surgical hemispherectomy is not a viable option.
Methods This is a descriptive review of the endovascular technique used to treat consecutive pediatric patients with serial transarterial embolization for intractable seizures due to HME between 2018 and 2022. Clinical presentation, endovascular procedural details and complications, and efficacy were examined.
Results Three infants (13-day-old, 13-week-old and 15-day-old) with HME and intractable seizures underwent a total of 10 transarterial embolizations. Anticipated intraprocedural events included vasospasm and focal subarachnoid hemorrhage in all three infants, effectively controlled endovascularly, and non-target embolization in one infant. No infants had symptomatic intracranial hemorrhage or femoral artery occlusion. EEG background quiescence and seizure cessation was achieved after the final stage of embolization in all patients. All infants were discharged home from the neonatal ICU (median length of stay 36 days, range 27–74 days) and remain seizure-free to date (4 years, 9 months, and 8 months). None have developed hydrocephalus, required surgical hemispherectomy or other neurosurgical interventions.
Conclusion Endovascular hemispherectomy can be safely used to provide definitive treatment of HME-related epilepsy in neonates and young infants when intraprocedural events are managed effectively. This less invasive novel approach should be considered a feasible early alternative to surgical hemispherectomy. Further studies are needed to enhance the safety profile and to assess long-term neurodevelopmental outcome and durability of freedom from seizures.
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Deceased Taeun Chang deceased on 18 June 2022
Contributors All authors participated in the concept, revision, and final approval of the manuscript. MSP drafted the manuscript and prepared the figures.
Funding The authors have not declared a specific grant for this research from any funding agency in the public, commercial or not-for-profit sectors.
Competing interests None declared.
Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; externally peer reviewed.
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