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We understand the gravity of the situation

Understanding hydrocephalus

We would like to support you in managing your hydrocephalus as part of your daily life.

The following sections provide helpful information about hydrocephalus

What is Hydrocephalus?

Hydrocephalus is also known as “water on the brain”. It is caused by an abnormal accumulation of cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) in the inner of the brain (ventricles of the brain). The ventricular system consist of four ventricles connected by narrow passages. CSF flows through the ventricles before it exits into a cavity, the so called subarachnoid space.

CSF covers the brain and the spinal cord and usually reabsorbs into the bloodstream, thus production and absorption is normally balanced. CFS has amongst others the following important life-sustaining functions:

  • To act as a cushion or "shock absorber“ against injuries
  • To deliver nutrients and proteins that are needed for the nourishment and normal function of the brain

An imbalance in production and absorption results in an abnormal widening of the ventricles. Due to the enlargement of the ventricles the pressure on the brain (intracranial pressure) rises which can lead to serious neurological damages of the brain. In some cases the cause of hydrocephalus are not clearly identifiable.

Icons for gait disturbance, dementia and incontinence
Icons for the symptoms of pediatric and acute hydrocephalus
Graph of a brain with a hydocephalus shunt demonstration

Why do shunts need to be improved?

Learn more about the challenges with conventional hydrocephalus valves.

Read more