gms | German Medical Science

62nd Annual Meeting of the German Society of Neurosurgery (DGNC)
Joint Meeting with the Polish Society of Neurosurgeons (PNCH)

German Society of Neurosurgery (DGNC)

7 - 11 May 2011, Hamburg

Comparison of quality of life (QOL) after epilepsy surgery and after clipping of incidental aneurysms

Meeting Abstract

  • M. von Lehe - Klinik für Neurochirurgie, Universitätsklinikum Bonn
  • K. Michta - Klinik für Neurochirurgie, Universitätsklinikum Bonn
  • R. Fimmers - Institut für Medizinische Biometrie, Informatik, Epidemiologie, Universitätsklinikum Bonn
  • H. Clusmann - Klinik für Neurochirurgie, Universitätsklinikum Aachen; Klinik für Neurochirurgie, Universitätsklinikum Bonn

Deutsche Gesellschaft für Neurochirurgie. Polnische Gesellschaft für Neurochirurgen. 62. Jahrestagung der Deutschen Gesellschaft für Neurochirurgie (DGNC), Joint Meeting mit der Polnischen Gesellschaft für Neurochirurgen (PNCH). Hamburg, 07.-11.05.2011. Düsseldorf: German Medical Science GMS Publishing House; 2011. DocMO.11.09

doi: 10.3205/11dgnc086, urn:nbn:de:0183-11dgnc0865

Published: April 28, 2011

© 2011 von Lehe et al.
This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License ( You are free: to Share – to copy, distribute and transmit the work, provided the original author and source are credited.



Objective: To compare QOL in patients who are seizure-free after selective amygdalahippocampectomy with patients who were diagnosed with an incidental aneurysm and treated with microsurgical clipping. Both groups were operated via pterional craniotomy and a transsylvian approach. The aim was to show the impact of the surgical procedure itself (both groups) and to distinguish the impact of the removal of temporomesial structures (epilepsy group).

Methods: 26 patients were matched in each group. There were no malignancies, no brain diseases or pre-operative deficits in the history. All patients had an uneventful post-operative course. All epilepsy patients were completely seizure-free postoperatively. The postoperative angiography of aneurysm patients showed the complete obliteration of the single aneurysm of the internal carotid artery or its branches, respectively. Patients were asked to complete two questionnaires concerning QOL and overall QOL and different domains were compared.

Results: Mean age was 48 years (range 31 - 63); mean follow-up was 87 months (range 12 - 162). The period between initial diagnosis and operation was 5.6 months (range 1 - 22, aneurysm group) and 29.7 years (range 4 - 55, epilepsy group), respectively. Patients after epilepsy surgery rate their QOL significantly better than patients after vascular surgery (p = 0.05, BONNUS; p = 0.13, SF36). Concerning different domains, patients after clipping feel significantly limited in their physical capabilities (p = 0.05, SF36; p = 0.21, HRQOL) and mood (p = 0.01, BONNUS; p = 0.19, SF36). Social situation and cognitive capabilities show no statistically significant difference between both groups. The assessment of the changes postoperatively in QOL (BONNUS) shows positive trends in the overall QOL and all domains in the group of epilepsy patients and – vice versa – negative trends in the overall QOL and all domains in the group with patients after clipping (p = 0.05 for overall QOL, p = 0.01 for emotional situation). In both groups the postoperative changes in cognitive capabilities was rated the worst.

Conclusions: Interestingly, patients after uneventful clipping of an incidental aneurysm (and thus a diagnosed finding, not a disease) feel much more affected in their QOL than expected – even in domains that obviously should be better than in the group of patients after resection of the temporomesial structures. This may be due to the potentially life-threatening condition that appeared acutely and to the loss of personal integrity after brain surgery.