What is Obstructive Hydrocephalus?
Hydrocephalus is commonly referred to as water on the brain (in Greek “hydro” means water and “cephalus” means head). Hydrocephalus is a condition in which there is an excessive accumulation of fluid within the skull.
Cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) is a clear fluid that surrounds the spinal cord and brain. A few of the functions of CSF include acting as a shock absorber, transporting nutrients, removal of waste, and regulating pressure in the brain. The body continuously produces and absorbs CSF; therefore anything that affects either of these can lead to an imbalance. Also, anything that interrupts the normal flow of CSF can create its buildup and the resulting pressure on the brain.
An excess of pressure on the brain is potentially harmful; thus hydrocephalus can cause permanent brain damage and even death. However, with appropriate treatment, most patients are able to lead normal lives with few limitations.
Obstructive hydrocephalus can occur in patients of any age from infants to the elderly. Obstructive hydrocephalus is also known as non-communicating hydrocephalus. Here there’s a blockage that prevents the flow of cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) between certain structures (ventricles) in the brain.