is the medical explanation for hydrocephalus? Hydrocephalus is defined broadly
as a disruption in the formation, flow, or absorption of cerebrospinal fluid
(CSF), resulting in an increase in the volume occupied by this fluid in the
Central Nervous System (CNS). It’s also known as a hydrodynamic CSF disorder.
Acute hydrocephalus lasts days, subacute hydrocephalus lasts weeks, and chronic
hydrocephalus lasts months or years.
are several types of hydrocephalus:
Benign external hydrocephalus is a
self-limiting absorption deficiency of infancy and early childhood
characterized by mildly elevated intracranial pressure (ICP). The ventricles
are usually not significantly enlarged, and the condition usually resolves
within a year.
Normal pressure hydrocephalus (NPH) is uncommon in
patients under the age of 60. This condition is distinguished by enlarged
ventricles and intermittent intracranial hypertension. Gait apraxia,
incontinence, and dementia are the classic Hakim triad of symptoms.
Communicating hydrocephalus is caused by
complete communication between the ventricles and the subarachnoid space. It is
caused by CSF overproduction, CSF absorption problems, or venous drainage
Noncommunicating hydrocephalus occurs when CSF
flow within the ventricular system or at its outlets is obstructed. It is
caused by lesions that occupy intraventricular or extraventricular mass and
disrupt the ventricular anatomy.
Congenital hydrocephalus refers to
ventriculomegaly (enlargement of the ventricles) that occurs during the fetal
and infancy periods and is frequently associated with macrocephaly (enlarged
What explains hydrocephaly? Brain plasticity?
plasticity is the brain’s ability to reorganize itself, forming new brain cells
and connections, as well as new functions for brain cells (neurons).
plasticity is adaptive, meaning it improves function or compensates for lost
function. The verdict is in: the brain is capable of remarkable widespread
growth and adaptation throughout life, not just during childhood.
we form a new long-term memory, learn something new, or develop a new skill,
new neurons, and brain circuitry are formed as a result.
each new skill, a new network of brain tissue develops. Long-term meditation
practice changes the circuitry of the cortical hemispheres.
you learn a new musical instrument, your cortex’s focal points expand.
neurologists believe that these unusual cases of hydrocephaly are testaments to
the brain’s incredible plasticity.
Is brain plasticity responsible for
plasticity is clearly at work here in some ways. These people’s brains have
obviously reorganized themselves massively – almost beyond recognition.
do the principles of this reorganization make sense? No, it does not. While
growing extra neural connection strengths or new neurons as a result of
learning can be explained in terms of brain plasticity, the kind of colossal
transformation we’re seeing here goes far beyond what standard scientific
theories about brain function can explain.
Wall, professor of anatomy at University College, London believes that talking
as though these cases are explained by the brain’s plasticity ” is a
cop-out to get around something you don’t understand”. I agree with him.
Hydrocephaly and the power of the human mind
in my opinion, demonstrates that our MINDS can influence the neurobiology of
means that understanding these remarkable individuals with almost no brains is
best accomplished by determining how mental causes cause and re-organize brain
processes – rather than our usual way of thinking about it: that brain
processes determine our mental life.
fact that these people have normal or exceptional minds despite having only a
small fraction of the normal amount of brain tissue defies conventional
neuroscientific explanations of behavior.
an honors degree in mathematics with a 50-gram brain can only be explained if
we accept that mental life, in some ways, transcends biological life: there
must be emergent properties that are fully MENTAL that end up rewiring the
brain in ways that defy our current scientific understanding.
of these people describe themselves as strong-willed and obstinate. I’m going
to make a wild guess: EVERY SINGLE ONE OF THESE CASE STUDIES HAS A STRONG MIND.
They are determined, obstinate, and focused.
characteristics would be revealed if they took personality tests. They have
brains that defy logic.
with hydrocephaly demonstrate, with a strong and determined mind, that you only
need a brain the size of a large coin to get a first-class honors degree in
Read: Baby Blood Sugar Levels
what is possible with a strong mind and a 1.5kg brain like the majority of us.
FAQs Related To What Is The Medical Explanation For
is the main cause of hydrocephalus?
caused by an imbalance in the amount of cerebrospinal fluid produced and
absorbed into the bloodstream. Cerebrospinal fluid is produced by brain tissues
that line the ventricles. It moves through the ventricles via interconnected
are the three main causes of hydrocephalus?
the brain – for example, if blood leaks over the brain’s surface – is one
possible cause of acquired hydrocephalus (subarachnoid haemorrhage) clots of
blood in the brain (venous thrombosis) Meningitis is a bacterial infection of
the membranes that surround the brain and spinal cord.
are the 4 types of hydrocephalus?
hydrocephalus, non-communicating hydrocephalus, normal pressure hydrocephalus,
and ex-vacuo hydrocephalus are the four main types of hydrocephalus. When the
flow of CSF after it leaves your ventricles is blocked, you have to communicate
is the best treatment for hydrocephalus?
insertion of a drainage system, known as a shunt, is the most common treatment
It is made up of a long, flexible tube with a valve that
keeps brain fluid flowing in the right direction and at the right rate.
of the tubing is usually inserted into one of the ventricles of the brain.
hydrocephalus be treated with drugs?
acetazolamide (ACZ) and furosemide (FUR) is used to treat posthemorrhagic
Both are diuretics that appear to reduce CSF secretion at the
choroid plexus level. ACZ can be used on its own or in combination with FUR.
do you diagnose hydrocephalus?
CT and MRI scans
are frequently used in tandem to confirm a diagnosis of congenital hydrocephalus
and hydrocephalus that develops later in children and adults (acquired). These
provide a thorough examination of the brain.
hydrocephalus be cured without surgery?
While there is no
known way to prevent or cure hydrocephalus, three life-saving treatment options
that require brain surgery are available.
hydrocephalus be stopped?
There is no cure
for hydrocephalus, but there are treatments that allow those affected to live
relatively normal lives.
In some cases, the blockage that is causing the fluid
buildup in the brain can be surgically removed.
hydrocephalus be treated naturally?
At the moment,
there is no pharmacological treatment for hydrocephalus, which is only treated
Typically, a tube is inserted into the fluid-filled cavities of the
brain, and excess liquid is drained to another part of the body.
hydrocephalus cause sudden death?
To begin with,
sudden death in hydrocephalic patients can occur without any warning of
gradually worsening obtundation or signs of herniation. Prior to respiratory
arrest, such patients may be awake and ambulatory.