Long-term Outcomes of Epilepsy Surgery in Children

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After a child with epilepsy has surgery to remove the part of the brain that causes seizures, there is hope that many aspects of that child’s life will improve in the long term. Dr. Mary Lou Smith and her team at the Hospital for Sick Children are looking at the long term outcomes of children who undergo epilepsy surgery.

In their research, Dr. Smith and her team found that children who were seizure free at long-term follow-up (between 4-11 years) showed an improvement in general intelligence, as measured by I.Q. However, children who continued to have seizures showed declines in many aspects of intelligence. This study also showed that being seizure-free - no matter if it comes as a result of surgery or drug therapy - is related to improved intelligence in the long term.

Dr. Smith’s future research includes looking at aspects of intelligence beyond I.Q. (e.g. language, academic skills, and memory) and whether these types of intelligence improve with seizure freedom in the long term.

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Status: Completed

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