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Doctor insights on: My Sister Was Diagnosed With Hydrocephalus What Do I Need To Know

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My sister was diagnosed with hydrocephalus. What do I need to know?

My sister was diagnosed with hydrocephalus. What do I need to know?

Her age? Shunting: Some hc is due to tumors blocking the flow of csf. There the tumor must be removed. In the elderly one may have "non-obstructive hc" the cause of which is unclear. Most cases are treated by placing a shunt from ventricle in brain to the abdomen. ...Read more

Dr. James Goodrich
707 doctors shared insights

Hydrocephalus (Definition)

A condition in which there is an abnormal accumulation of cerebrospinal fluid or "brain fluid" within the brain which causes increased pressure inside the skull. It can ...Read more


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I am pregnant and my unborn child was just diagnosed with hydrocephalus, what should I do next?

I am pregnant and my unborn child was just diagnosed with hydrocephalus, what should I do next?

See your MD: Consult your OB physician who can arrange for further analysis and tests. In particular, the underlying cause of the hydrocephalus and potential treatment may need to be explored. You may also need the consultation with a pediatric neurosurgeon who may need to be available for interventions after the delivery. ...Read more

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Dr. Alan Ali Dr. Ali
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How can hydrocephalus happen?

Dr. Alan Ali Dr. Ali
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How can hydrocephalus happen?

Hydrocephalus: Genetic predisposition to aqueductal stenosis, Neural tube defects such as spina bifida, Premature birth complications such as intraventricular hemorrhage, Tumors, Traumatic head injury, Subarachnoid hemorrhage, Meningitis. ...Read more

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What does hydrocephalus mean?

Hydrocephalus: Hydrocephalus is a situation where there is too much water in the brain. Spinal fluid normally circulates around and within in the brain. If the amount increases beyond normal volumes then one can have hydrocephalus. ...Read more

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How do you treat hydrocephalus?

How do you treat hydrocephalus?

Shunt placement: True symptomatic hydrocephalus is treated by draining the ventricles through a small tube. A neurosurgeon preforms this by making a small hole in the skull and passing a thin tube into the lateral ventrical of the brain. This tube is then passed downward under the skin into the abdominal cavity where it allows the cerebral spinal fluid flow from the ventricals. ...Read more

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What is arrested hydrocephalus?

What is arrested hydrocephalus?

Arressted Hydro: Arrested hydrocephalus' is said to have occurred when the intracranial pressure returns to normal, despite the ventricles remaining dilated. The CSF absorption appears to have balanced production. In the infant, normal development resumes but any pre-existing damage remains. ...Read more

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When does hydrocephalus appear ?

When does hydrocephalus appear ?

It varies: Hydrocephalus commonly called water on the brain can be present at birth or can develop later in life. It is due to an imbalance between production and absorbtion of brain fluid or csf. There are numerous causes of the congenital form. Other causes include infection and tumors. There is even a form seen later in life that mimics dementia and causes balance problems. ...Read more

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Are there cures for hydrocephalus?

Treatments exist: Hydrocephalus is an excess of cerebro-spinal fluid. If there is too much due to a blockage in drainage in one spot, a tube can be placed to drain the fluid around the blockage. This is called a shunt and will end the hydrocephalus. ...Read more

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What are the types of hydrocephalus?

Acquired/congenital: Congenital Causes of Hydrocephalus Aqueductal stenosis Intraventricular hemorrhage Myelomeningocele (spina bifida) – Chiari II malformation Dandy-Walker Malformation Acquired causes of hydrocephalus Trauma Hemorrhage Tumor Infection Idiopathic Normal pressure hydrocephalus Pseudotumor cerebrii Multicompartmental (loculated) hydrocephalus Trapped fourth ventricle ...Read more

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What causes hydrocephalus in adults?

Hydrocephalus: It is blockage of the flow of fluid in the brain. Meningitis, tumor, traumatic head injury, subarachnoid hemorrhage, cranial surgery, or medications have been implicated. In children it can be due to premature birth or genetic defects - that blocks flow (aqueductal stenosis). Apparently, often the cause is not determined. With early treatment "many lead normal lives with few limitations.". ...Read more

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What are the tests for hydrocephalus?

CT scan: The tests for hydrocephalus are ct and MRI of the brain. There can also be some variations on the above to test for hydrocephalus. ...Read more

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Do hydrocephalus mean you are dying?

Do hydrocephalus mean you are  dying?

No: Hydrocephalus means there is something preventing the fluid in your brain from draining correctly. Thus, it backs up and makes the areas that "hold" the fluid dilate. While this causes many problems, and if left untreated it can progress to serious issues, it does not mean you will die. It can be treated, and you should see a neurosurgeon. ...Read more

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How do I know if I have hydrocephalus?

Hydrocephalus: Hydrocephalus is a condition where too much cerebrospinal fluid collects within the brain. Early symptoms are headaches which are not easily treated with over the counter medications. As the disorder progresses there can by nausea and vomiting. A consultation with a neurologist might be helpful to determine if you have hydrocephalus. ...Read more

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What is living with hydrocephalus like?

It depends: It depends whether it was treated with a shunt at birth, and if it was assciated with other congenital abnormalities like spins bifida these patients can have normal life to be unable to walk, wheelchair bound and developmental delay and several other problems requiring medical/orthpedic/urological/mental sequele and problems requiring care. ...Read more

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Can you tell me how hydrocephalus happen?

Can you tell me how hydrocephalus happen?

Read my monograph: I have discussed this question in detail on my own blog. Go to http://surgeonwriter.com/hydrolog/ and download the free monograph HYDROCEPHALUS: An Owner's Manual. It's free. This is written for the lay person. It's brief, interesting, and informative. It's not encyclopedic, but it will answer most of your questions. Enough anyway, so you will know what to ask your doc. Good luck. ...Read more

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How is hydrocephalus detected in a child ?

Depends: In the fetus, it is frequently diagnosed with ultrasound. In infants, before the fontanels (soft spots) close, ultrasound will also detect it. In the older child, MRI or ct will show hydrocephalus if suspected by signs and symptoms. The exam of the back of the eye can suggest increased pressure in the head an raise the possibility of hydrocephalus. ...Read more

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Do hydrocephalus mean you are dying slowly?

We all are: I manage many children and adults with hydrocephalus. Most lead wonderful productive lives in spite of the diagnosis. Many were diagnosed and treated as premature infants or in the first few months of life. For most I am the only one who knows they have a shunt, and they lead normal lives and participate in normal activities. They and i must be cautious to be aware of possible complications. ...Read more

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What are typical symptoms of hydrocephalus?

Which type?: Acute high pressure hydrocephalus can bring headache, vomiting, nausea, papilledema (retinal swelling), sleepiness or coma (unarousable unresponsiveness). Chronic "normal pressure hydrocephalus" occurs over years and brings "magnetic" gait disturbance, then cognitive impairment (inattentive, slowed thinking) and finally bladder incontinence associated with lack of concern or embarrassment. ...Read more

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Is it true that hydrocephalus is hereditary?

No: Hydrochephalus, the obstruction of cerebral spinal fluid can be due to physical obstruction of CSF pathways, blockage of the absorption structures that remove CSF due to hemorrhage in the brain or infection. Tumors may cause narrowing or obstruction in the course of csf. ...Read more

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