Skip to main content Accessibility help

Study of Cerebrospinal Fluid Shunt–Associated Infections in the First Year Following Placement, by the Canadian Nosocomial Infection Surveillance Program

  • Joanne M. Langley (a1) (a2), Denise Gravel (a3), Dorothy Moore (a4), Anne Matlow (a5), Joanne Embree (a6), Donna MacKinnon-Cameron (a2), John Conly (a7) and Canadian Nosocomial Infection Surveillance Program...


In a national surveillance system study, the infection rate following cerebrospinal fluid shunt surgery was 4.1% (95% confidence interval, 3.36%-4.92%). Cases of infection were more common in children than in adults (4.85% vs 3.24%; P = .04) and occurred sooner after surgery in children than in adults. A wide variation in compliance with antimicrobial prophylaxis was observed between 21 participating medical centers.


Corresponding author

IWK Health Centre, 5850 University Avenue, PO Box 9700, Halifax, Nova Scotia, CanadaB3K 6R8 (


Hide All
1.Patwardhan, RV, Nanda, A. Implanted ventricular shunts in the United States: the billion-dollar-a-year cost of hydrocephalus treatment. Neurosurgery 2005;56:139144.
2.Schoenbaum, SC, Gardner, P, Shillito, J. Infections of cerebrospinal fluid shunts: epidemiology, clinical manifestations, and therapy. J Infect Dis 1975;131:543552.
3.McLone, D, Czyzewski, D, Raimondi, A, Sommers, R. Central nervous system infections as a limiting factor in the intelligence of children with myelomeningocoele. Pediatrics 1982;70:338342.
4.National Nosocomial Infections Surveillance (NNIS) System Report, data summary from January 1992 through June 2004, issued October 2004. Am J Infect Control 2004;32:470485.
5.Horan, TC, Gaynes, RP, Martone, WJ, Jarvis, WR, Emori, TG. CDC definitions of nosocomial surgical site infections, 1992: a modification of CDC definitions of surgical wound infections. Infect Control Hosp Epidemiol 1992;13:606608.
6.Thompson, DN, Hartley, JC, Hayward, RD. Shunt infection: is there a near-miss scenario? J Neurosurg 2007;106(1 Suppl):1519.
7.Choux, M, Genitori, L, Lang, D, Lena, G. Shunt implantation: reducing the incidence of shunt infection. J Neurosurg 1992;77:875880.
8.Mottolese, C, Grando, J, Convert, J, et al.Zero rate of shunt infection in the first postoperative year in children—dream or reality? Childs Nerv Syst 2000;16:210212.
9.Ratilai, B, Costa, J, Sampaio, C. Antibiotic prophylaxis for surgical introduction of intracranial ventricular shunts: a. systematic review. J Neurosurg Pediatrics 2008;1:4856.
10.Bratzier, DW, Houck, PM. Antimicrobial prophylaxis for surgery: an advisory statement from the National Surgical Infection Prevention Project. Am J Surg 2005;189:395404.


Full text views

Total number of HTML views: 0
Total number of PDF views: 0 *
Loading metrics...

Abstract views

Total abstract views: 0 *
Loading metrics...

* Views captured on Cambridge Core between <date>. This data will be updated every 24 hours.

Usage data cannot currently be displayed