A successful surgical case of a hypothalamic hamartoma with gelastic seizure: A case report

Tomoaki Fujita, Shinjitsu Nishimura, Hiroyuki Sakata, Yuichi Furuno, Masaki Mino, Emiko Hori, Mitsuomi Kaimori, Reizou Shirane, Michiharu Nishijima

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)


Gelastic seizure is a rare form of epilepsy defined as automatic bouts of laughter without mirth commonly associated with a hypothalamic hamartoma. Surgical treatment of hypothalamic hamartomas is associated with a high risk of complications because of the close vicinity of adjacent structures such as the optic tracts and mammillary bodies. This case was an 11-year-old girl who presented with gelastic seizure and complicated partial seizure. She developed gelastic seizure at a frequency of 10 bouts per day. She was found to have an elliptical mass close to the left hypothalamus. The signal intensity on magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) was consistent with hypothalamic hamartoma. The patient underwent surgical resection by a subtemporal approach. Pathological findings confirmed the diagnosis of hypothalamic hamartoma. Postoperative MRI demonstrated that the hypothalamic hamartoma was successfully resected. Twenty four months after surgery, complicated partial seizure in this patient has improved to Engel's class Ia and gelastic seizure has improved to Engel's class IIIa.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)781-785
Number of pages5
JournalNeurological Surgery
Issue number8
Publication statusPublished - 2009 Aug
Externally publishedYes


  • Gelastic seizure
  • Hypothalamic hamartoma
  • Surgical treatment

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine(all)


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