Radiosurgery for temporal lobe arteriovenous malformations: Effect of temporal location on seizure outcomes

Dale Ding, Mark Quigg, Robert M. Starke, Zhiyuan Xu, Chun Po Yen, Colin J. Przybylowski, Blair K. Dodson, Jason P. Sheehan

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

33 Scopus citations


Obj ect The temporal lobe is particularly susceptible to epileptogenesis. However, the routine use of anticonvulsant therapy is not implemented in temporal lobe AVM patients without seizures at presentation. The goals of this case-control study were to determine the radiosurgical outcomes for temporal lobe AVMs and to define the effect of temporal lobe location on postradiosurgery AVM seizure outcomes. Methods From a database of approximately 1400 patients, the authors generated a case cohort from patients with temporal lobe AVMs with at least 2 years follow-up or obliteration. A control cohort with similar baseline AVM characteristics was generated, blinded to outcome, from patients with non-temporal, cortical AVMs. They evaluated the rates and predictors of seizure freedom or decreased seizure frequency in patients with seizures or de novo seizures in those without seizures. Results A total of 175 temporal lobe AVMs were identified based on the inclusion criteria. Seizure was the presenting symptom in 38% of patients. The median AVM volume was 3.3 cm3, and the Spetzler-Martin grade was III or higher in 39% of cases. The median radiosurgical prescription dose was 22 Gy. At a median clinical follow-up of 73 months, the rates of seizure control and de novo seizures were 62% and 2%, respectively. Prior embolization (p = 0.023) and lower radiosurgical dose (p = 0.027) were significant predictors of seizure control. Neither temporal lobe location (p = 0.187) nor obliteration (p = 0.522) affected seizure outcomes. The cumulative obliteration rate was 63%, which was significantly higher in patients without seizures at presentation (p = 0.046). The rates of symptomatic and permanent radiationinduced changes were 3% and 1%, respectively. The annual risk of postradiosurgery hemorrhage was 1.3%. Con clusions Radiosurgery is an effective treatment for temporal lobe AVMs. Furthermore, radiosurgery is protective against seizure progression in patients with temporal lobe AVM-associated seizures. Temporal lobe location does not affect radiosurgery-induced seizure control. The low risk of new-onset seizures in patients with temporal or extratemporal AVMs does not seem to warrant prophylactic use of anticonvulsants.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)924-934
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of neurosurgery
Issue number4
StatePublished - Oct 2015
Externally publishedYes


  • Epilepsy
  • Gamma Knife
  • Intracranial arteriovenous malformation
  • Seizures
  • Stereotactic radiosurgery
  • Temporal lobe
  • Vascular disorders
  • Vascular malformations

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery
  • Clinical Neurology


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