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Ann R Coll Surg Engl. 2018 Jan 24:1-5. doi: 10.1308/rcsann.2017.0221. [Epub ahead of print]

Complication rates of external ventricular drain insertion by surgeons of different experience.

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1
Plymouth Hospitals NHS Trust , UK.

Abstract

Introduction Insertion of external ventricular drain (EVD) is a widely accepted, routinely performed procedure for treatment of hydrocephalus and raised intracranial pressure. The purpose of this study was to investigate whether a surgeon's experience affects the associated complication rate. Methods This retrospective study included all adult patients undergoing EVD insertion at a single centre between July 2013 and June 2015. Medical records were retrieved to obtain details on patient demographics, surgical indication, risk factors for infection and use of anticoagulants or antiplatelets. Surgeon experience, operative time, intraoperative antibiotic prophylaxis, need for revision surgery and EVD associated infection were examined. Information on catheter tip position and radiological evidence of intracranial haemorrhage was obtained from postoperative imaging. Results A total of 89 patients were included in the study. The overall infection, haemorrhage and revision rates were 4.8%, 7.8% and 13.0% respectively, with no significant difference among surgeons of different experience. The mean operating time for patients who developed an infection was 22 minutes while for those without an infection, it was 33 minutes (p=0.474). Anticoagulation/antiplatelet use did not appear to increase the rate of haemorrhage. The infection rate did not correlate with known risk factors (eg diabetes and steroids), operation start time (daytime vs out of hours) or duration of surgery although intraoperative (single dose) antibiotic prophylaxis seemed to reduce the infection rate. There was also a correlation between longer duration of catheterisation and increased risk of infection. Conclusions This is the first study demonstrating there is no significant difference in complication rates between surgeons of different experience. EVD insertion is a core neurosurgical skill and junior trainees should be trained to perform it.

KEYWORDS:

Medical education; Nosocomial infection; Ventriculostomy

PMID:
29364007
DOI:
10.1308/rcsann.2017.0221
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