Duration of complex partial seizures: An intracranial EEG study

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42 Scopus citations


Purpose: The dynamics of partial seizures originating from neocortical and mesial temporal regions are thought to differ, yet there are no quantitative comparative studies. The studies reported here investigate the duration of complex partial seizures in these populations using analyses of seizures recorded from intracranial arrays. Methods: Data were collected from patients undergoing presurgical evaluation with intracranial electrodes. Seizure duration was defined as the time of earliest sustained ictal activity until the termination either in all electrodes (global duration, GD), or at the onset area (focal duration, FD). Patients were divided into three groups: mesial temporal lobe epilepsy (MTLE), neocortical temporal lobe epilepsy (NCTLE), and neocortical extratemporal lobe epilepsy (NCXTLE). Results: Complex partial seizure durations were significantly longer in the MTLE group compared to the NCXTLE group. Median GD for MTLE was 106 s, and for NCXTLE was 78 s. There were no significant differences between seizure durations when comparing MTLE group to NCTLE group, or comparing NCTLE group to NCXTLE group. In the MTLE group, patients with bilateral recording arrays had significantly longer median seizure durations (GD and FD) than those sampled with unilateral arrays. Conclusions: In this select group of patients there is a significant difference between the duration of complex partial seizures of mesial temporal and neocortical extratemporal origin with mesial temporal complex partial seizures being longer. This may result from a number of possibilities including the bilateral propagation of some mesial temporal seizures and differences in ictal generators of the underlying networks.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)677-684
Number of pages8
Issue number4
StatePublished - Apr 2008


  • Complex partial seizure
  • Intracranial EEG
  • Seizure duration
  • Seizure dynamics
  • Seizure termination

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neurology
  • Clinical Neurology


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