Comparative analysis of monotherapy versus duotherapy antiseizure drug management for postoperative seizure control in patients undergoing an awake craniotomy

Chikezie I. Eseonu, Francisco Eguia, Oscar Garcia, Peter W. Kaplan, Alfredo Quinones-Hinojosa

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

5 Scopus citations


OBJECTIVE Postoperative seizures are a common complication in patients undergoing an awake craniotomy, given the cortical manipulation during tumor resection and the electrical cortical stimulation for brain mapping. However, little evidence exists about the efficacy of postoperative seizure prophylaxis. This study aims to determine the most appropriate antiseizure drug (ASD) management regimen following an awake craniotomy. METHODS The authors performed a retrospective analysis of data pertaining to patients who underwent an awake craniotomy for brain tumor from 2007 to 2015 performed by a single surgeon. Patients were divided into 2 groups, those who received a single ASD (the monotherapy group) and those who received 2 types of ASDs (the duotherapy group). Patient demographics, symptoms, tumor characteristics, hospitalization details, and seizure outcome were evaluated. Multivariable logistic regression was used to evaluate numerous clinical variables associated with postoperative seizures. RESULTS A total of 81 patients underwent an awake craniotomy for tumor resection of an eloquent brain lesion. Preoperative baseline characteristics were comparable between the 2 groups. The postoperative seizure rate was 21.7% in the monotherapy group and 5.7% in the duotherapy group (p = 0.044). Seizure outcome at 6 months' follow-up was assessed with the Engel classification scale. The duotherapy group had a significantly higher proportion of seizure-free (Engel Class I) patients than the monotherapy group (90% vs 60%, p = 0.027). The length of stay was similar, 4.02 days in the monotherapy group and 4.51 days in the duotherapy group (p = 0.193). The 90-day readmission rate was higher for the monotherapy group (26.1% vs 8.5% in the duotherapy group, p = 0.044). Multivariate logistic regression showed that preoperative seizure history was a significant predictor for postoperative seizures following an awake craniotomy (OR 2.08, 95% CI 0.56-0.90, p > 0.001). CONCLUSIONS Patients with a preoperative seizure history may be at a higher risk for postoperative seizures following an awake craniotomy and may benefit from better postoperative seizure control with postoperative ASD duotherapy.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1661-1667
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Neurosurgery
Issue number6
StatePublished - Jun 1 2018



  • Antiepileptics
  • Awake craniotomy
  • Epilepsy
  • Monotherapy
  • Oncology
  • Polytherapy
  • Seizures

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery
  • Clinical Neurology

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