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Introduction: Obstructive hydrocephalus has long been managed by valve-regulated shunts. These shunts are associated with a myriad of short and long-term complications. This has fueled interest in Endoscopic Third Ventriculostomy (ETV) which provides a more physiological pathway for cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) diversion while avoiding many shunt-related complications.
Aim: The objective of this study is to analyze the outcomes of ETV at our institution, focusing on the indications, success rates, and short-term complications.
Methods: Between July 2010 and September 2015, 47 patients with obstructive hydrocephalus underwent ETV at the Neurosurgery Teaching Hospital in Baghdad/ Iraq. We retrospectively analyzed the data of these patients using hospital health records. Simple statistics were performed using SPSS Version 20. A standardized surgical technique was employed in all cases.
Results: The mean age was 4.4 years (range 40 days - 38 years). The male: female ratio was 1.23:1 (55% males and 45% females). The most common cause of obstructive hydrocephalus in patients undergoing ETV was aqueductal stenosis (62%; N=29). The second most common cause was posterior fossa tumours (23%; N=11). The overall success rate for ETV was 68%. The net post-operative complication rate was 13% (N=6). CSF leak and seizures were the only two charted post-operative complications at the rates of 9%(N=4) and 4% (N=2), accordingly. No deaths were recorded.
Conclusion: ETV is a viable alternative to shunt insertion in a select group of patients with obstructive hydrocephalus, with acceptable success rate and safety profile.