Long-term complications of hydrocephalus can vary widely and are often difficult to predict.
If hydrocephalus has progressed by the time of birth, it may result in significant intellectual, developmental and physical disabilities. Less severe cases, when treated appropriately, may have few, if any, notable complications.
Adults who have experienced a significant decline in memory or other thinking skills generally have poorer recoveries and persistent symptoms after treatment of hydrocephalus.
The severity of complications depends on:
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- Underlying medical or developmental problems
- Severity of initial symptoms
- Timeliness of diagnosis and treatment
- Hydrocephalus. American Association of Neurological Surgeons. http://www.aans.org/Patient%20Information/Conditions%20and%20Treatments/Hydrocephalus.aspx. Accessed June 11, 2011.
- Hydrocephalus fact sheet. National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke. http://www.ninds.nih.gov/disorders/hydrocephalus/detail_hydrocephalus.htm. Accessed June 10, 2011.
- Fishman MA. Hydrocephalus. http://www.uptodate.com/home/index.html. Accessed May 10, 2011.
- Diagnosis of hydrocephalus. Hydrocephalus Association. https://www.hydroassoc.org/hydrocephalus-education-and-support/learning-about-hydrcephalus/diagnosis-of-hydrocephalus. Accessed June 11, 2011.
- Graff-Radford NR. Normal pressure hydrocephalus. http://www.uptodate.com/home/index.html. Accessed June 10, 2011.
- Life-threatening complications of hydrocephalus. Hydrocephalus Association. https://www.hydroassoc.org/hydrocephalus-education-and-support/learning-about-hydrcephalus/life-threatening-complications-of-hydrocephalus. Accessed June 11, 2011.
- Hamilton MG. Treatment of hydrocephalus in adults. Seminars in Pediatric Neurology. 2009;16:34.
- Meningococcal vaccine: Who and when to vaccinate. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. http://www.cdc.gov/vaccines/vpd-vac/mening/who-vaccinate.htm. Accessed June 28, 2011.
- Wetjen NM (expert opinion). Mayo Clinic, Rochester, Minn. July 6, 2011.
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