The Miethke Sensor Reservoir sits within a ventriculoperitoneal shunt system to give a reading of the pressure within the shunt. This information can guide the management of hydrocephalus patients who present frequently with headaches.
We reviewed a cohort of 12 patients who underwent implantation of a Sensor Reservoir to assess how the management of their symptoms changed over a 4-year period.
When comparing the group before the Sensor Reservoir and after the Sensor Reservoir insertion, there was a 75% reduction in number of CT head scans (P<0.05), 100% reduction in episodes of ICP monitoring (P<0.05), 55% reduction in number of X-ray shunt series, and a 50% reduction in acute presentation to hospital with shunt-related symptoms. The number of clinic attendances increased by 44%. In addition, cost analysis showed a saving of £6952 per patients over the 2-year period following Sensor Reservoir insertion as a result of reduced admissions and investigations. Complications were seen in 3 patients—two patients developed shunt-related infections, and 1 patient underwent shunt revision due to a proximal shunt obstruction. Seventy-five percent of patients showed an improvement in their symptoms at the end of the 4-year period.
Implantation of a Sensor Reservoir in shunt patients with chronic headaches can reduce the number of investigations and hospital admissions and guide management resulting in a clinical improvement.
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The authors would like to acknowledge Mr Saurabh Sinha for his critical appraisal of this study, Ms Sally-Ann Collins who provided and cared for study patients, and Mr Mark Sutherland for statistical support.
This article does not contain any studies with human participants or animals performed by any of the authors.
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Bjornson, A., Henderson, D., Lawrence, E. et al. The Sensor Reservoir—does it change management?. Acta Neurochir (2021). https://doi.org/10.1007/s00701-021-04729-y
- Ventriculoperitoneal shunt
- Sensor Reservoir