Tumor-associated status epilepticus in patients with glioma: Clinical characteristics and outcomes


Between 3 and 12% of all adult status epilepticus (SE) are caused by a brain tumor. Gliomas, and in particular, high-grade gliomas (HGGs), are at high risk of SE development. In this study, we aimed to describe the clinical characteristic and outcomes of tumor-associated SE (TASE) in a population of adult patients with glioma prospectively collected between 2013 and 2019. In the aforementioned period, we observed 26 TASE (median age: 68 years). Overall, 22 patients (85%) presented a HGG (one anaplastic astrocytoma and 21 a glioblastoma) while 4 had a LGG (two diffuse astrocytoma and two ganglioglioma). All the lesions were supratentorial, and the temporal lobe was the most frequently involved (20 patients). Fourteen patients (54%) had the SE episode as the first manifestation of the tumor; in the remaining 12 (all patients with a HGG), the development of SE heralded tumor progression or reappearance. When TASE outcomes were compared with the ones observed in the general population of SE (SEGP), the response to treatment was not different between the two populations (refractory SE (RSE)/super-refractory SE (SRSE) 12% versus 13%, p = 0.75). In the short-term, group with TASE had a significantly lower global disability (modified Rankin scale (mRS) < 3 at discharge: 60% versus 32%, p < 0.001; at 30 days follow-up: 62% versus 30%, p < 0.001) and mortality (30 days mortality: 4% versus 27%, p = 0.008). Six months and 1 year mortality did not show any difference between the two groups (6 months: 46% and 45%, respectively, p = 0.9; 1 year: 68% and 52%, respectively, p = 0.22).

The appearance of TASE often heralds tumor grow and progression. Even in this context, it appears to be as treatment-responsive as SEGP and the short-term disability and mortality related to SE episode are lower than those observed in the SEGP.

Proceedings of the 7th London-Innsbruck Colloquium on Status Epilepticus and Acute Seizures.

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