Effects of Propofol on Electrocorticography in Patients With Intractable Partial Epilepsy

Felix Schneider*, Wolfgang Herzer, Henry W. S. Schroeder, Jan U. Mueller, Pawel Kolyschkow, Michael Sommer, Juergen Piek, Christof Kessler, Uwe Runge

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review


Background: Propofol's potential to trigger generalized tonic-clonic seizures and epileptic discharges is still controversial. The aim of this study was to investigate the incidence of epileptic discharges and epileptic seizures in epilepsy patients anesthetized with propofol. Methods: Thirty three patients with intractable partial epilepsy selected for video electrocorticography-monitoring were studied. Twenty-three of them had epilepsy surgery with at least one year of followup. Subdural electrodes were surgically removed under propofol anesthesia. Video electrocorticography recordings were classified into two phases (Phase-A, >= 2 min without propofol, followed by Phase-P, starting 20 s after propofol injection) and visually analyzed concerning the occurrence of spikes, and spike-burst-suppression-patterns. Results: No seizures were detected. Spikes were recorded in Phase-P, but without a significant change in frequency compared to Phase-A. Spike-burst-suppression-patterns occurred in 8 of the 33 patients (24.2%). Five of those patients (62.5%) had epilepsy surgery, 3 (60%) became seizure-free. Conclusions: Our results do not contraindicate the use of propofol in patients with partial epilepsy. While spike-burst-suppression-patterns were recorded under propofol, the small number of surgically treated patients limits conclusions concerning their predictive value for improved epilepsy surgery outcome.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)150-155
JournalJournal of Neurosurgical Anesthesiology
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Apr 2011


  • partial epilepsy
  • electrocorticography
  • propofol
  • spike-burst-suppression-patterns
  • epileptogenic zone

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