The value of ventricular measurements in the prediction of shunt dependency after aneurysmal subarachnoid hemorrhage

Acta Neurochirurgica (2023) 165:1545–1555

Chronic hydrocephalus requiring shunt placement is a common complication of aneurysmal subarachnoid hemorrhage (SAH). Different risk factors and prediction scores for post-SAH shunt dependency have been evaluated so far. We analyzed the value of ventricle measurements for prediction of the need for shunt placement in SAH patients.

Methods Eligible SAH cases treated between 01/2003 and 06/2016 were included. Initial computed tomography scans were reviewed to measure ventricle indices (bifrontal, bicaudate, Evans’, ventricular, Huckman’s, and third ventricle ratio). Previously introduced CHESS and SDASH scores for shunt dependency were calculated. Receiver operating characteristic analyses were performed for diagnostic accuracy of the ventricle indices and to identify the clinically relevant cut-offs.

Results Shunt placement followed in 221 (36.5%) of 606 patients. In univariate analyses, all ventricular indices were associated with shunting (all: p<0.0001). The area under the curve (AUC) ranged between 0.622 and 0.662. In multivariate analyses, only Huckman’s index was associated with shunt dependency (cut-off at ≥6.0cm, p<0.0001) independent of the CHESS score as baseline prediction model. A combined score (0–10 points) containing the CHESS score components (0–8 points) and Huckman’s index (+2 points) showed better diagnostic accuracy (AUC=0.751) than the CHESS (AUC=0.713) and SDASH (AUC=0.693) scores and the highest overall model quality (0.71 vs. 0.65 and 0.67), respectively.

Conclusions Ventricle measurements are feasible for early prediction of shunt placement after SAH. The combined prediction model containing the CHESS score and Huckman’s index showed remarkable diagnostic accuracy regarding identification of SAH individuals requiring shunt placement. External validation of the presented combined CHESS-Huckman score is mandatory.