Ventriculopleural Shunts for Hydrocephalus: A Useful Alternative
From 1969 to 1979, ventriculopleural shunts were inserted in 29 children with progressive hydrocephalus. A standard Pudenz pump with a Raimondi catheter was used for all but 1 child for whom a Holter valve was used. The shunt functioned adequately in 7, but in 18 it had to be changed as a result of symptomatic pleural effusion. From 1979 to 1982, a further series of 52 other patients received ventriculopleural shunts, and these cases have recently been reviewed. The apparatus used was a Portnoy ventricular catheter or a medium or high pressure Heyer Schulte pump with an antisiphon device and a Salmon distal catheter. Three patients developed a shunt infection. One died with a functioning shunt. Four catheters became blocked by adhesions, and in only 1 patient was a peritoneal shunt substituted as a result of symptomatic effusion.
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