Epilepsy: Anterior Temporal Lobectomy

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Topic Overview

Anterior temporal lobectomy is the removal of part of one of the brain's temporal lobes. It is the most common type of surgery for epilepsy.

This type of surgery is used to treat people with temporal lobe epilepsy when medicines fail to control seizures. Temporal lobe epilepsy is the most common type of epilepsy in adults. It usually causes complex partial seizures that start in the temporal lobe.

For a person who has seizures that do not get better with medicines, surgery may be a good option. It may help control epilepsy better than if the person were to keep trying the medicines.footnote 1

Related Information



  1. Engel J Jr, et al. (2003, reaffirmed 2005). Practice parameter: Temporal lobe and localized neocortical resections for epilepsy. Report of the Quality Standards Subcommittee of the American Academy of Neurology, in association with the American Epilepsy Society and the American Association of Neurological Surgeons. Neurology, 60(4): 538–547.


ByHealthwise Staff
Primary Medical Reviewer John Pope, MD - Pediatrics
Specialist Medical Reviewer Steven C. Schachter, MD - Neurology

Current as ofFebruary 20, 2015

Current as of: February 20, 2015