Can you have a baby with a VP shunt?

Published by Charlie Davidson on

Can you have a baby with a VP shunt?

They concluded that maternal shunts during pregnancy increased the incidences of complications for some patients however; with proper management those patients can have a normal pregnancy and labor. So the presence of a VP shunt is not a contraindication for pregnancy.

Are VP shunts visible?

You won’t be able to see the catheter because it will be under your skin. However, you may be able to feel the shunt catheter along your neck. Once all the parts of the shunt are connected, it will start draining the excess CSF as needed to reduce the pressure in your brain.

What are the 2 most serious complications of children who have VP shunts?

Obstruction is the most common cause of ventriculoperitoneal shunt (VPS) malfunction. Infection is the second most common cause of VPS malfunction, which is more common in children. Pseudocyst is a late complication of VPS, which may present as abdominal pain and a palpable mass.

What are the early signs of ventricular shunt malfunction in infants?

Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center provides the following warning signs of shunt malfunction:

  • Headaches.
  • Vomiting.
  • Lethargy (sleepiness)
  • Irritability.
  • Swelling or redness along the shunt tract.
  • Decreased school performance.
  • Periods of confusion.
  • Seizures.

How often should a VP shunt be checked?

All younger patients with a shunt should probably be encouraged to seek a neurosurgical check up at least every three years, ideally at a dedicated hydrocephalus follow up clinic.

Does a VP shunt stay in forever?

VP shunts do not work forever. When the shunt stops working: The child can have another buildup of fluid in the brain. Another surgery is needed to fix it.

How do you know if a VP shunt is malfunctioning?

Symptoms of a shunt malfunction may be obvious, redness over the shunt, headache, sleepiness, vomiting, or visual changes. Symptoms may also be subtle, change in behavior, change in school performance.

Is shunt malfunction an emergency?

A shunt blockage can be very serious as it can lead to an build-up of excess fluid in the brain, which can cause brain damage. This will cause the symptoms of hydrocephalus. Emergency surgery will be needed to replace the malfunctioning shunt.

How many years does a VP shunt last?

Shunting is successful in reducing pressure in the brain in most people. VP shunts are likely to require replacement after several years, especially in small children. The average lifespan of an infant’s shunt is two years. Adults and children over the age of 2 may not need a shunt replacement for eight or more years.

How do you check if VP shunt is working?

In many cases, diagnostic imaging, such as CT scans or X-rays, is performed to rule in or rule out shunt dysfunction. These imaging tests expose patients to radiation, and many times these tests indicate that the shunt is in fact working properly.

When should a VP shunt be removed?

Once the shunt has been proven to be unnecessary, it can be removed – typically as an outpatient procedure. Careful long-term follow-up is necessary to evaluate for recurrence of hydrocephalus requiring shunt replacement.

How to find out if your child has a VP shunt?

To learn more about VP shunts, talk to your child’s St. Jude doctor or nurse practitioner. If you are inside the hospital, dial 3300. Locally, call 595-3300. If you are outside the Memphis area, dial toll-free 1-866-2STJUDE (1-866-278-5833), and press 0 when the call connects.

What happens if you have a VP shunt infection?

A shunt infection happens when bacteria get in the area around the VP shunt. When this happens, the shunt can stop working properly. This can let pressure build up in your child’s brain. The pressure can damage your child’s brain or even be life threatening.

How are VP shunts used to treat hydrocephalus?

A VP shunt is a long plastic tube that lets fluid drain from the brain to another part of the body. This keeps pressure from building up on the brain when your child has hydrocephalus. A VP shunt has at least 3 parts.

How often do VP shunts need to be replaced?

The silicone VP Shunts however, need to be replaced after a stipulated period of time. This varies with age of the candidate as for babies and children, vp shunt replacement is done after two years of functioning. Whereas, in case of adults, the vp shunts can be replaced anytime between six years to eight years of time.

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