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Hydrocephalus is excess fluid on the brain. This applies pressure to the brain that can cause damage.


Symptoms include headaches, blurred vision, nausea and vomiting, neck pain, changes in mental function, difficulty walking, and urinary and bowel incontinence.


The causes of hydrocephalus are not entirely known. It has been suggested that congenital (patients born with the condition) hydrocephalus may be associated with a restriction to the flow of cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) in the brain during development, whilst hydrocephalus that develops post-birth may be due to illness or injury.


The main treatment options for hydrocephalus include shunt surgery or neuroendoscopy. Shunt surgery involves inserting a thin tube that drains fluid from the brain to a different region of the body, usually the abdomen. Alternatively, a hole can be formed in the floor of the brain to allow fluid to flow to, and be absorbed by, the brain.