Low-pressure hydrocephalus

Low-pressure hydrocephalus: indication for custom-made catheters? Technical report

Authors: Galbarriatu L, Rivero-Garvía M, Olivares M, Miranda D, Pomposo I, Márquez-Rivas J.

BACKGROUND: Low-pressure hydrocephalus (LPH) is characterized by ventriculomegaly with persistent low intracranial pressure (ICP). Sub-zero drainage is needed for its management and multiple solutions have been described. Our aim is to report our experience with custom-made peritoneal catheters with larger inner diameter as an alternative treatment option.
METHODS: We made a retrospective review of all patients diagnosed with LPH and treated with custom-made peritoneal catheters at the Virgen del Rocío Pediatric Neurosurgical Unit. Catheters were coated with antibiotic or silver. The inner diameter of ventricular catheters was 1.4 mm; peritoneal catheters were larger than usual (1.9 mm inner diameter).
RESULTS: We identified four patients in whom five custom-made peritoneal catheters were used over a 3-year period. There were two males and the mean age was 10 years (6 months-17 years). In all patients, placement of an EVD was necessary for sub-zero drainage, with maximum negative pressure of -8 cm H20. The mean time of maintenance of EVD was 102 days (10 days-1 year). Finally, three ventriculoperitoneal (VP) valveless systems, one with antigravitation device, and one Pro-GAV VP shunt were placed, all of them with larger custom-made peritoneal catheters. After a mean follow-up period of 2.3 years (6 months-3 years), two patients are completely recovered, one patient is partially dependent for daily activities with good cognitive status, and the last one is a child who died due to his brain tumor.
CONCLUSION: The custom-made peritoneal catheters with larger inner diameter could be a good option for the management of this complex pathology.

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