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Hydrodynamics of the Certas™ programmable valve for the treatment of hydrocephalus

Author(s): Eklund Anders | Koskinen Lars-Owe D | Williams Michael A | Luciano Mark G | Dombrowski Stephen M | Malm Jan

Journal: Fluids and Barriers of the CNS
ISSN 2045-8118

Volume: 9;
Issue: 1;
Start page: 12;
Date: 2012;
Original page

Keywords: Hydrocephalus | Normal pressure hydrocephalus | CSF | Cerebrospinal fluid | Shunt | Intracranial pressure | Outflow resistance | Conductance

Abstract Background The new Certas™ shunt for the treatment of hydrocephalus has seven standard pressure settings that according to the manufacturer range from 36 to 238 mmH2O, and an additional “Virtual Off” setting with an opening pressure >400 mmH2O. Information on actual pressure response and reliability of shunt performance is important in clinical application, especially the “Virtual Off” setting as a non-surgical replacement for shunt ligation. The objective of this study was to evaluate the in-vitro hydrodynamic performance of the Certas™ shunt. Methods Six new Certas™ shunts with proximal and distal catheters were tested with an automated, computerized test system that raised the pressure from zero to a maximum pressure and back to zero at each valve setting. Opening pressure and flow resistance were determined. Results For settings 1–7 the measured opening pressure range was 26 to 247 mmH2O, and the mean change in opening pressure for a one-step adjustment was between 33 and 38 mmH2O. For setting 8 (“Virtual Off”) the measured mean opening pressure was 494 ± 34 mmH2O (range 451 to 556 mmH2O). The mean outflow resistance was 7.0 mmHg/ml/min (outflow conductance 17.9 μl/s/kPa). Conclusions The six shunts had similar characteristics and closely matched the manufacturer’s specifications for opening pressure at settings 1–7. The opening pressure for the “Virtual Off” setting was nearly 500 mmH2O, which is 100 mmH2O higher than the manufacturer’s specification of “>400” and should be functionally off for most patients with communicating hydrocephalus. Clinical studies are needed to evaluate if the CSF dynamic profile persists after implantation in patients.
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