Ventriculostomy with subsequent ventriculoperitoneal shunt placement after subarachnoid hemorrhage: the effect of implantation site on postoperative complications

Acta Neurochirurgica (2020) 162:1831–1836

Patients suffering from aneurysmal subarachnoid hemorrhage (SAH) with shunt-dependent hydrocephalus require subsequent placement of a ventriculoperitoneal shunt (VPS) after ventriculostomy. However, in patients with previous ventriculostomy, the site for proximal VPS catheter placement is still controversial.We investigated the effect of catheter placement on postoperative complications by analyzing patients with ventriculostomy and subsequent VPS placement after SAH.

Methods From January 2004 to December 2018, 164 of 1128 patients suffering from SAH underwent subsequent VPS placement after ventriculostomy in the authors’ institution. Patients were divided into two groups according to the position of the ventriculostomy and the site of the proximal VPS catheter (“same site” group versus “contralateral site” group). VPS-related infectious and bleeding complications following VPS placement were assessed and analyzed.

Results Overall, VPS-related infections occurred in 11 of the 164 patients (7%). Furthermore, five of the 164 patients (3%) suffered from VPS-related hemorrhage. However, VPS infection rate was lower 5% (6/115) in the same site compared to 10% (5/49) in the contralateral site group, although without reaching statistical significance (OR = 0.48 (0.14, 1.67) 95% confidence interval, p = 0.3). VPS-related hemorrhage rate did not differ significantly between patients in the same site group (3.5%, 4/115) and the contralateral site group (2.0%, 1/49; OR = 1.73 (0.18, 15.9), p = 1.0).

Conclusions Our study suggests that the use of the ventriculostomy site for VPS placement does not significantly increase the risk of either VPS-related infections or VPS-related hemorrhages.