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Overview: A ventriculoperitoneal (VP) shunt is a medical device that relieves pressure on the brain caused by fluid accumulation and the process involved is called as VP shunting. VP shunting is a surgical procedure that primarily treats a condition called hydrocephalus.
Hydrocephalus is a condition in which excess cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) builds up within the ventricles (fluid-containing cavities) of the brain and may increase pressure within the head. Your doctor will place VP shunts inside one of your brain’s ventricles to divert fluid away from the brain and restore normal flow and absorption of CSF.
VP Shunt surgery is performed under general anesthesia. Your surgeon will make a small incision on your scalp. A tiny opening will be made in the protective covering of the brain. This opening will accommodate the catheter placement in the lateral ventricle. Next your surgeon will make two or three small incisions to place the shunt valve. The catheter is tunneled under the skin. Once all the parts of the shunt are connected, it will start draining the excess CSF as needed to reduce the pressure in your brain. After the surgery your incisions will be covered with sterile bandages.
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