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Brain & Nervous System Disorders Message Board

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I'm a 28 years old male. I had a brain MRI done last week because I have been having symptoms like dizziness, brain fog, forgetfulness, decreased cognitive skills and constant pressure behind both eyes. The result came out with "mild ventriculomegaly", which means my ventricles are larger than normal due to excess fluid in the brain forcing them to expand. This condition is called Hydrocephalus, which is fatal if left untreated. I was told that the most efffective way to remedy this is to have a "shunt" implanted in my brain to act like a valve to relieve the fluid pressure by allowing the fluid to flow somewhere else.

Anybody who has done this, or knows someone who has done this, or has knowledge about this procedure, please let me know anything that will help me prepare for what's about to happen to me in a few weeks. I would like to know the following:

1. How effective has shunt been to you at "giving your life back"? How has your life been?
2. Are there things you wished you had known before the implant?
3. Were there any complications after the surgery?
4. How much did the operation cost?
5. Do you have to regularly see your doctor to have the system checked/maintained?
6. Anything else I should know? Anything at all.

[QUOTE=mcoffey42]I know this a little late. But I am wondering if you have had your surgery and how things went?
Did you have a VP shunt?
I am a 43yr old female that was diagnosed with psuedo tumor cerbri a year ago this past Jan.

MY ICP was extremely high and had Preesure behind my eyes. My first surgery was March of 05 developed infection second surgery was May 17,2005
3rd surgery was Oct 05.
I still have headaches but not as bad as before. It has taken a long time to "feel better" since my body had went through so much in such a short time.

No matter what once you have Hydro it can only be managed not cured. And a normal life is easily attained. Once you have your shunt within 6 months you should be as good as new. Stay positive......

I had a shunt "installed" last Wednesday. I am experiencing some pain still but it is bearable.
Three times? Infections both times? How long to develop? Were the symptoms a fever?
I am 64 and the proceedure was for normal pressure Hydrocephalus. My husband and I are hoping that it will improve my balance and gate/walking.
eg1926 -

I'm sorry I'm so late seeing your post about your mother's Normal Pressure Hydrocephalus. I hope you are still checking for responses.

My father had undiagnosed Normal Pressure Hydrocephalus for years. He had shunt surgery 4.5 years ago at the age of 80, and has done very well. He's able to live alone, drive to the grocery store, park, barber shop, etc.

It took him about a week to recover from the general anesthetic and adjust to the changes in his brain, but he had very little discomfort from the actual surgery.

The only health problems he's had since surgery have been unrelated, but when he has any kind of infection (most urinary tract, but also gallbladder), all of his NPH symptoms return. We know to watch for any changes.

No surgery is without risks, and this especially is true of elderly people. However, the path without surgery is predictable, and it's not good. There's a good chance for improvement with no complications. My dad considers it a miracle that, at 84, he's so active and independent.

I hope this helps!

[QUOTE=ecg1926;2931822]Hi - This is my first time of message boarding so forgive me if I'm slow to the process. Our Mom is 80 years old and was just diagnosed with Normal Pressure Hydrocephalus. Her Neurosurgeon suggested the shunt operation to relieve the fluid. She is very nervous and afraid but is opened to listening to anyone that has gone through the operation and if there is a noticable change in the quality of life. I appreciate any feedback. Thank you, a very concerned daughter.[/QUOTE]

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