Hydrocephalus

(Water on the Brain)

Definition

Hydrocephalus is too much fluid in the brain. The fluid is called cerebrospinal fluid (CSF). It is a clear fluid that normally surrounds both the spinal cord and the brain. It is also in the ventricular system in the brain. With hydrocephalus the ventricles, or spaces, become enlarged.You may be born with hydrocephalus, or it may develop after an injury or illness.
Hydrocephalus
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Causes

Hydrocephalus occurs when:
  • A blockage doesn't allow CSF to drain properly
  • Another condition, such as bleeding, inflammation, or infection, makes the brain unable to resorb fluid
  • An excess of CSF is produced
These problems with the CSF may be caused by:

Risk Factors

Factors that increase your chance of hydrocephalus include:
  • Neural tube defects
  • Mother has infection during pregnancy, such as:
  • Brain infections
  • Malformations of the brain
  • Brain injuries
  • Brain hemorrhage

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