Positional shunt assist for slit ventricle syndrome

Lee Azolai, Shlomi Constantini, Lahav Constantini, Jonathan Roth*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review


Purpose: Hydrocephalus is one of the most common pathologies in pediatric neurosurgery. One of the causes of recurring events of headaches among shunted children is “slit ventricle syndrome” (SVS). Several potential treatments have been proposed, yet SVS often represents a treatment challenge. The goal of the current series is to present our experience with adding a positional shunt-assist (SA) (Miethke, Aesculap) for the treatment of SVS. Methods: Clinical data was retrospectively collected from all consecutive children with SVS that were treated with SA (Miethke, Aesculap) at our center. Surgical and clinical outcomes as expressed by hospital visits, or need for additional surgery, were evaluated. Results: Nine cases were included. Hydrocephalus etiology included IVH (6), postinfectious (1), and congenital syndromes (2). Average age at first shunt was 4 months. Primary shunt type was differential-pressure-valve in all. Average age at SVS onset was 4 years. Average age at SA placement was 5.5 years. There were no perioperative complications besides a single stich abscess. A 6-month follow-up period after SA was compared to a 6-month period prior to the SA: average hospital visits decreased from 2.4 to 0.6 per patient (p < 0.0002). 4/9 patients needed an LP or shunt revision before the SA surgery, while no procedure was indicated during the immediate 6-month follow-up. At the last follow-up, there was a significant reduction in the rate of ER visits compared to prior to surgery; however, the number of neurosurgical procedures did not significantly differ. Conclusion: Using a SA for SVS was associated with a short-term improvement of symptoms in the majority of cases, reduction in hospital visits, and reduced need for SVS-related procedures.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)109-114
Number of pages6
JournalChild's Nervous System
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 2024


  • Headaches
  • Hydrocephalus
  • Shunt assist
  • Slit ventricle syndrome


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