Nagahama Y, Zervos TM, Murata KK, Holman L, Karsonovich T, Parker JJ, Chen JS, Phillips HW, Fajardo M, Nariai H, Hussain SA, Porter BE, Grant GA, Ragheb J, Wang S, O'Neill BR, Alexander AL, Bollo RJ, and Fallah A. Real-World Preliminary Experience With Responsive Neurostimulation in Pediatric Epilepsy: A Multicenter Retrospective Observational Study. Neurosurgery 2021.
BACKGROUND: Despite the well-documented utility of responsive neurostimulation (RNS, NeuroPace) in adult epilepsy patients, literature on the use of RNS in children is limited.
OBJECTIVE: To determine the real-world efficacy and safety of RNS in pediatric epilepsy patients.
METHODS: Patients with childhood-onset drug-resistant epilepsy treated with RNS were retrospectively identified at 5 pediatric centers. Reduction of disabling seizures and complications were evaluated for children (<18 >yr) and young adults (>18 yr) and compared with prior literature pertaining to adult patients.
RESULTS: Of 35 patients identified, 17 were <18 yr at the time of RNS implantation, including a 3-yr-old patient. Four patients (11%) had concurrent resection. Three complications, requiring additional surgical interventions, were noted in young adults (2 infections [6%] and 1 lead fracture [3%]). No complications were noted in children. Among the 32 patients with continued therapy, 2 (6%) achieved seizure freedom, 4 (13%) achieved ≥90% seizure reduction, 13 (41%) had ≥50% reduction, 8 (25%) had <50% reduction, and 5 (16%) experienced no improvement. The average follow-up duration was 1.7 yr (median 1.8 yr, range 0.3-4.8 yr). There was no statistically significant difference for seizure reduction and complications between children and young adults in our cohort or between our cohort and the adult literature.
CONCLUSION: These preliminary data suggest that RNS is well tolerated and an effective off-label surgical treatment of drug-resistant epilepsy in carefully selected pediatric patients as young as 3 yr of age. Data regarding long-term efficacy and safety in children will be critical to optimize patient selection.
ePub ahead of print