is excessive accumulation of cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) within brain
is produced in the ventricles and circulates through the brain and
spinal cord before it is reabsorbed from the surface of the brain
into the blood stream. When this pathway is blocked due to any reason,
backpressure develops in the ventricles and results in hydrocephalus.
CSF has many important functions viz. Nourishment, cushion like
protection of the nervous tissue and to carry waste products away.
Congenital (present at birth)
is caused by a complex interaction of genetic and environment factors.
Aqueductal stenosis (narrowing) is the most frequent cause. Blockage
of fourth ventricle outlet (Dandy Walker Syndrome) or Chiari malformations
(in association with Spina Bifida) are other common causes.
Acquired (development later in life)
can result from infection, bleeding (hemorrhage) head trauma, tumors
and cysts. The most common cause in our country is meningitis (infection).
updated on 09-10-2001