Neurocritical Care

, Volume 30, Issue 3, pp 686–687 | Cite as

Downstream Dislocation of a Ventriculo-Atrial Shunt Catheter

  • Jan Hendrik SchaeferEmail author
  • Richard du Mesnil de Rochemont
  • Kolja Jahnke

Case description

A 46-year-old woman was transferred to our clinic via ambulance from a nearby airport. The patient reportedly hit the back of her head against the bathroom wall during turbulences on an inbound flight. Afterward, she complained about holocephalic headaches and demonstrated bilateral abducens nerve palsy. The remainder of the physical examination was unremarkable. In the past, she had undergone multiple cerebral shunt operations due to a posttraumatic hydrocephalus stemming from a motor vehicle accident as a child (Figure  1). Anamnestic details were sparse, but from the initial head computed tomography (CT) we could surmise that she had previously been implanted with a ventricular shunt in the left ventricle as well as an infratentorial shunt, which was inserted into a suboccipital midline trepanation. Dorsal to the cerebellum, there was a persistent cerebrospinal fluid buildup, which the suboccipital catheter appeared to drain. Both catheters then joined together in a...


Author Contribution

JHS drafted the manuscript. RdM helped in acquiring and interpreting the data. KJ assisted with editing and revising the manuscript for intellectual content.

Source of Support

No funding.

Compliance with Ethical Standards

Conflict of interest


Ethical approval and Informed consent

This article does not contain any studies with human participants or animals performed by any of the authors. The patient gave informed consent for a case report.


  1. 1.
    Browd SR, Ragel BT, Gottfried ON, Kestle JRW. Failure of cerebrospinal fluid shunts: part I: obstruction and mechanical failure. Pediatr Neurol. 2006;34:83–92.CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  2. 2.
    Browd SR, Gottfried ON, Ragel BT, Kestle JRW. Failure of cerebrospinal fluid shunts: part II: overdrainage, loculation, and abdominal complications. Pediatr Neurol. 2006;34:171–6.CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  3. 3.
    Stannard MW, Rollins NK. Subcutaneous catheter calcification in ventriculoperitoneal shunts. AJNR Am J Neuroradiol. 1995;16:1276–8.PubMedGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC, part of Springer Nature and Neurocritical Care Society 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of NeurologyGoethe UniversityFrankfurt am MainGermany
  2. 2.Institute of NeuroradiologyGoethe UniversityFrankfurt am MainGermany

Personalised recommendations