Ventriculopleural shunting used as a temporary diversion

Acta Neurochir (Wien). 1992;115(1-2):67-8. doi: 10.1007/BF01400595.


Due to the limited absorptive capacity of the pleural cavity, infants and young children are not generally ideal candidates for ventriculopleural shunts. We report using chest cavities as alternate for temporary diversion of CSF in a young child. Venous access to the cervical region could not be utilized because of scarring from previous procedures, while peritoneal access was contraindicated due to repeated pseudocyst formation. Pleural effusions were removed by thoracentesis when necessary, and the shunt catheter was changed to the opposite side of the chest when the effusions reaccumulated within one week. Utilizing the ventriculopleural shunts allowed us to temporize her non-communicating hydrocephalus for a period of one year, until a definitive CSF procedure by direct intracardiac placement of the distal catheter could be performed.

Publication types

  • Case Reports

MeSH terms

  • Cerebrospinal Fluid Shunts / instrumentation*
  • Female
  • Follow-Up Studies
  • Heart Atria
  • Humans
  • Hydrocephalus / surgery*
  • Infant
  • Infant, Newborn
  • Meningomyelocele / surgery*
  • Pleura
  • Pleural Effusion / surgery
  • Postoperative Complications / surgery*
  • Reoperation
  • Thoracotomy