Normal Pressure Hydrocephalus Treatment
Once diagnosis has been established, the most common treatment for normal pressure hydrocephalus is the placement of a fine, soft catheter known as a ventriculo-peritoneal (VP) shunt, in the ventricle of the brain that drains the cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) into the abdomen. The rate of CSF drainage is usually adjusted by a valve on the shunt. This normal pressure hydrocephalus treatment allows the excess CSF to drain out of the brain and be absorbed in the belly, thus alleviating the pressure.
Many people who receive the shunt treatment show improvement in their gait, cognition and urinary control.
Diagnostic methods include a thorough neurological evaluation, followed by selectively chosen screening and testing techniques. Patients then undergo cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) drainage, followed by a series of tests. It is very important to carefully identify those patients who are most likely to benefit from surgical treatment. A thorough diagnostic protocol is designed to reduce the likelihood of the patient having to undergo a permanent surgical treatment for normal pressure hydrocephalus that carries some risk, and then not being helped by it.
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