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J Neurosurg Pediatr. 2012 Aug;10(2):108-11. doi: 10.3171/2012.4.PEDS1253. Epub 2012 Jun 29.

Long-term outcome for endoscopic third ventriculostomy alone or in combination with choroid plexus cauterization for congenital aqueductal stenosis in African infants.

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  • 1Department of Neurosurgery, Children's Hospital Boston, Boston, Massachusetts 02115, USA. benjamin.warf@childrens.harvard.edu



The authors have previously reported on the overall improved efficacy of endoscopic third ventriculostomy (ETV) combined with choroid plexus cauterization (CPC) for infants younger than 1 year of age. In the present study they specifically examined the long-term efficacy of ETV with or without CPC in 35 infants with congenital aqueduct stenosis treated at CURE Children's Hospital of Uganda during the years 2001-2006.


Infants with congenital aqueductal stenosis were treated during 2 distinct treatment epochs: all underwent ETV alone, and subsequently all underwent ETV-CPC. Prospectively collected data in the clinical database were reviewed for all infants with an age < 1 year who had been treated for hydrocephalus due to congenital aqueductal stenosis. Study exclusion criteria included: 1) a history or findings on imaging or at the time of ventriculoscopy that suggested a possible infectious cause of the hydrocephalus, including scarred choroid plexus; 2) an open aqueduct or an aqueduct obstructed by a membrane or cyst rather than by stenosis; 3) severe malformations of the cerebral hemispheres including hydranencephaly, significant segments of undeveloped brain, or schizencephaly; 4) myelomeningocele, encephalocele, Dandy-Walker complex, or tumor; or 5) previous shunt insertion. The time to treatment failure was analyzed using the Kaplan-Meier method to construct survival curves. Log-rank (Mantel-Cox) and Gehan-Breslow-Wilcoxon tests were used to determine whether differences between the 2 treatment groups were significant.


Thirty-five patients met the study criteria. Endoscopic third ventriculostomy alone was performed in 12 patients (mean age 4.7 months), and combined ETV-CPC was performed in 23 patients (mean age 3.5 months). For patients without treatment failure, the mean and median follow-ups were, respectively, 51.6 and 48.0 months in the ETV group and 31.2 and 26.4 months in the ETV-CPC group. Treatment was successful in 48.6% of the patients who underwent ETV alone, as accurately predicted by the Endoscopic Third Ventriculostomy Success Score (ETVSS), and in 81.9% of the patients who underwent ETV-CPC (p = 0.0119, log-rank test; p = 0.0041, Gehan-Breslow-Wilcoxon test; HR 6.42 [95% CI 1.51-27.36]).


Combined ETV-CPC is significantly superior to ETV alone for infants younger than 1 year of age with congenital aqueductal stenosis. The fact that the outcome for ETV alone was accurately predicted by the ETVSS suggests that these results are applicable in developed countries.

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