gms | German Medical Science

58. Jahrestagung der Deutschen Gesellschaft für Neurochirurgie e. V. (DGNC)

Deutsche Gesellschaft für Neurochirurgie (DGNC) e. V.

26. bis 29.04.2007, Leipzig

Gravitational shunt-units and bedridden patients – a problem?

Gravitationsunterstützte Shunt-Ventile und Bettlägerigkeit – ein Problem?

Meeting Abstract

  • corresponding author Stefanie Kästner - Klinik für Neurochirurgie, Klinikum Kassel
  • S. Kaestner - Klinik für Neurochirurgie, Klinikum Kassel
  • N. Nitzsche - Klinik für Neurochirurgie, Klinikum Kassel
  • W. Deinsberger - Klinik für Neurochirurgie, Klinikum Kassel

Deutsche Gesellschaft für Neurochirurgie. 58. Jahrestagung der Deutschen Gesellschaft für Neurochirurgie e.V. (DGNC). Leipzig, 26.-29.04.2007. Düsseldorf: German Medical Science GMS Publishing House; 2007. DocP 101

The electronic version of this article is the complete one and can be found online at:

Published: April 11, 2007

© 2007 Kästner et al.
This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License ( You are free: to Share – to copy, distribute and transmit the work, provided the original author and source are credited.



Objective: Chronic hydrocephalus and shunt dependency is frequent in daily neurosurgery. Which valve serves best for which patient ist still under debate. We conducted this review in order to identify a subgroup of patients which is not optimally treated by modern shunt-valves with gravitational units.

Methods: We retrospectively reviewed our prospective hydrocephalus database and the corresponding patient charts from January 2006 up to now regarding the valve type used and their specific complications.

Results: During the last 11 months, 26 shunt systems were implanted in adults in our clinic. The ProGAV-valve (17 patients), the GAV-valve (8 patients) and the Hakim medos programmable valve (5 patients) were used. The etiology of hydrocephalus was as follows: NPH 10 patients, posthaemorrhagic 9 patients, tumor 6 patients, trauma 1 patient. 8 patients were preponderantly bedridden at the time of shunt insertion. 6 of these received valves with a gravitational units (2 ProGAV, 4 GAV). 4 of them presented with severe underdrainage resulting in a valve change in 2 patients. None of the bedridden patients with Hakim Medos programmable valves without gravitational unit developed an underdrainage during the length of their hospital stay.

Conclusions: Shunt systems with gravitational units are unsuitable for predominantly immobilized patients in the early postoperative state. There seems to be a problem with gravitational shunt-units and bedridden patients.