Wednesday, March 18, 2009

First experiences with an adjustable gravitational valve in childhood hydrocephalus

Rohde V, Haberl EJ, Ludwig H, Thomale UW. First experiences with an adjustable gravitational valve in childhood hydrocephalus. Journal of Neurosurgery: Pediatrics. 2009 Feb;3(2):90-3.

Department of Neurosurgery, Georg-August University, Goettingen; and.

Object The goal of this report was to describe the authors' initial experiences with an adjustable gravity-assisted valve (GAV) called the ProGAV in treating childhood hydrocephalus. Methods The ProGAV was implanted in 53 children (29 boys and 24 girls, median age 7.3 years) with hydrocephalus of various origins. The ProGAV consists of a differential-pressure unit with adjustable opening pressures and a gravitational unit with a fixed opening pressure. Results The mean follow-up period was 15.2 months (range 6-44 months). The authors did not observe any valve-related complications. Four infections (7.5%) occurred, warranting the removal of the shunt. In 19 children, the opening pressure was changed at least once during the follow-up period, for underdrainage in 10, overdrainage in 8, and shunt weaning in 1, with substantial clinical improvement in 18 children. Overall, good clinical results were obtained in 47 (88.7%) of the 53 valve placements. Conclusions With an overall success rate of 88.7%, the first experiences with the ProGAV in childhood hydrocephalus are promising and justify its further use in the pediatric population.

PMID: 19278305

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