Risk Factors and Characteristics of Intraoperative Seizures During Awake Craniotomy: A Retrospective Cohort Study of 562 Consecutive Patients With a Space-occupying Brain Lesion

Gabriel Paquin-Lanthier, Sudhakar Subramaniam, Kok Weng Leong, Abigail Daniels, Kawalpreet Singh, Hirokazu Takami, Tumul Chowdhury, Mark Bernstein, Lashmi Venkatraghavan

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9 Scopus citations


Introduction: Intraoperative seizures (IOSs) during awake craniotomy (AC) are associated with significant morbidity. The reported incidence of IOS is between 3% and 30%. The aim of this study was to identify risk factors for IOS during AC for elective resection or biopsy of a space-occupying brain lesion. Methods: In this retrospective study, we reviewed the records of all awake craniotomies performed by a single neurosurgeon at a single university hospital between July 2006 and December 2018. IOS was defined as a clinically apparent seizure that occurred in the operating room and was documented in the medical records. Explanatory variables were chosen based on previously published literature on risk factors for IOS. Results: Five hundred and sixty-two patients had a total of 607 AC procedures during the study period; 581 cases with complete anesthesia records were included in analysis. Twenty-nine (5.0%) IOS events were reported during 29 (5%) awake craniotomies. Most seizures (27/29; 93%) were focal in nature and did not limit planned intraoperative stimulation mapping. Variables associated with IOS at a univariate P-value <0.1 (frontal location of tumor, preoperative radiotherapy, preoperative use of antiepileptic drugs, intraoperative use of dexmedetomidine, and intraoperative stimulation mapping) were included in a multivariable logistic regression. Frontal location of tumor (adjusted odds ratio: 5.68, 95% confidence interval: 2.11-15.30) and intraoperative dexmedetomidine use (adjusted odds ratio: 2.724, 95% confidence interval: 1.24-6.00) were independently associated with IOS in the multivariable analysis. Conclusions: This study identified a low incidence (5%) of IOS during AC. The association between dexmedetomidine and IOS should be further studied in randomized trials as this is a modifiable risk factor.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)194-200
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Neurosurgical Anesthesiology
Issue number2
StatePublished - Apr 1 2023

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Surgery
  • Clinical Neurology
  • Anesthesiology and Pain Medicine

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