Can a baby survive hydrocephalus?
What is the life expectancy of a child who has hydrocephalus? Children often have a full life span if hydrocephalus is caught early and treated. Infants who undergo surgical treatment to reduce the excess fluid in the brain and survive to age 1 will not have a shortened life expectancy due to hydrocephalus.
How does a baby get hydrocephalus?
In some babies the condition is genetic, such as in babies with congenital aqueductal stenosis. Other conditions, such as neural tube defects (like spina bifida), are also associated with hydrocephalus. Other causes include premature birth, infections, tumors or bleeding inside the brain.
How do I know if my baby has hydrocephalus?
The most obvious sign of hydrocephalus in infants is a rapid increase in head circumference or an unusually large head size. Other symptoms may include seizures, vomiting, sleepiness, irritability, or eyes that constantly gaze downward.
Can hydrocephalus resolve itself in infants?
Unlike forms of hydrocephalus caused by increased CSF in the ventricles, the external form involves fluid outside the brain, usually does not require any treatment and typically resolves itself over time.
Is hydrocephalus a birth defect?
Congenital hydrocephalus is caused by a brain malformation or birth defect that causes excessive cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) to accumulate in brain cavities, called subarachnoid space. Cerebrospinal fluid is a clear, colorless liquid that surrounds the brain and spinal cord, protecting them from injury.
What is the most common cause of hydrocephalus in infants?
The most common cause of acquired hydrocephalus in infants is hemorrhage, most often as a consequence of prematurity. Other important causes include neoplasm and infection, usually bacterial meningitis.
How common is hydrocephalus in babies?
Hydrocephalus is not a disease but a condition and has several causes. Congenital (inborn) hydrocephalus occurs in one or two of every 1,000 babies born in the U.S. Hydrocephalus is the most common reason for brain surgery in children.
Can a child outgrow hydrocephalus?
In most cases, the implantation of a shunt will successfully control hydrocephalus, but shunts do not cure hydrocephalus. Hydrocephalus is a lifelong condition. However, with proper treatment and maintenance, children with hydrocephalus can lead normal lives with few limitations.
What is the treatment for hydrocephalus in the child?
The most common hydrocephalus treatment is a shunt, a small piece of silicone tubing placed surgically inside the body to bypass a blockage or otherwise create a better flow of cerebrospinal fluid. The shunt allows for fluid to flow through it in one direction.
How do you treat a baby with hydrocephalus?
7 Tips for Caring for a Child with Hydrocephalus
- Build a Support Network.
- Learn How to Monitor a Shunt.
- Do Not Let Them Play with Magnets.
- Pay Close Attention to Their Development.
- Be Aware That They May Need Special Education.
- Recognize Emergencies.
- Teach Your Child About Hydrocephalus.
What is the main cause of hydrocephalus?
Hydrocephalus is caused by an imbalance between how much cerebrospinal fluid is produced and how much is absorbed into the bloodstream. Cerebrospinal fluid is produced by tissues lining the ventricles of the brain. It flows through the ventricles by way of interconnecting channels.
Can a baby be born with hydrocephalus?
Hydrocephalus can occur either as a condition present at birth (congenital), or it can be acquired later in life. In some babies the condition is genetic, such as in babies with congenital aqueductal stenosis. Other conditions, such as neural tube defects (like spina bifida ), are also associated with hydrocephalus.
What are the signs and symptoms of infant encephalitis?
In infants and young children, signs and symptoms might also include: Bulging in the soft spots (fontanels) of an infant’s skull. Nausea and vomiting. Body stiffness. Poor feeding or not waking for a feeding.
Are there any genetic conditions associated with hydrocephalus?
In some babies the condition is genetic, such as in babies with congenital aqueductal stenosis. Other conditions, such as neural tube defects (like spina bifida ), are also associated with hydrocephalus.
How are shunts used to treat hydrocephalus in babies?
Surgery usually involves placing a mechanical shunting device into the baby’s head to help drain the extra CSF from the brain and redirect the extra fluid to another part of the body to be absorbed. A common type of shunt is the ventriculoperitoneal shunt. This directs the fluid into the abdominal cavity.