Assessing the Effect of Ventriculo-peritoneal Shunt Treatment for Congenital Hydrocephalus
Annals of the College of Medicine, Mosul,
2020, Volume 42, Issue 1, Pages 62-67
Context: Congenital hydrocephalus is one of the common neurological problems in infants, characterized by excessive accumulation of cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) in the central nervous system. Numerous babies delivered every day with this anomaly all over the world most of them in the developing countries. There are several forms of treatment; the commonest one is ventriculo-peritoneal shunt that transfers the CSF to the peritoneal cavity. It is associated with relatively low morbidity and mortality rates. Aim: This study aimed to evaluate the ventriculo-peritoneal shunt therapy outcomes for congenital hydrocephalus and find its complications.
Patients and methods: In this research, an observational case series study design had been adopted in Ibn-Sina teaching hospital applied on a convenient sample of 52 infants of both sexes with congenital hydrocephalus over a period of three years. Ethical consents were obtained from their parents. Then, clinical evaluation was done through head circumference and fontanel examinations followed by CT-scan and ultrasonic testing to confirm the diagnosis. All patients were subjected to the ventriculo-peritoneal shunt (VP) surgery with full coverage of appropriate antibiotics, and then they were followed for 6 months to assess the effectiveness of VP shunt in the treatment of hydrocephalus and to identify any complication associated with this surgery.
Results: Most cases (79%) were below 3 months of age and 55.5% of them were males. Only 13.5% of cases developed complications including upper and lower shunt obstruction, shunt infection (28.6% for each), and skin laceration in 14.2% of those 13.5% complicated cases. Most of these complications happened to infants older than 3 months of age.
Conclusion and recommendation: The study concluded that Ventriculo-peritoneal shunt was associated with low complication rate especially among young infants. Thus, it is recommended to adopt this procedure for the treatment of infantile hydrocephalus particularly among infants below 3 months of age.
Key words: Congenital, Hydrocephalus, Ventriculo-peritoneal, Shunt.
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