Adult Hydrocephalus Program
Normal Pressure Hydrocephalus
The neurosurgery team at the Swedish Neuroscience Institute has been working on a study concerning the use of imaging to help predict improvement in a patient’s memory and understanding (cognition) following placement of a ventriculoperitoneal (VP) shunt in the treatment of normal pressure hydrocephalus (NPH). This is a retrospective study, which means the team is looking back at information about patients who have already had the shunt procedure.
The study divides the patients into two groups — those with a normal volume in the hippocampus (the part of the brain that affects memory and understanding) and those with an abnormal volume. The team analyzes the patient’s symptoms related to cognition and gait (balance and walking) after the shunt has been placed. The research team is trying to determine whether measuring hippocampal volumes (HV) can predict cognitive outcomes from shunting cerebral spinal fluid (CSF).
Neuro-ophthalmologists at the Swedish Neuroscience Institute in Seattle have been participants in a phase II clinical trial conducted by the Neuro-Ophthalmology Research Disease Investigator Condortium (NORDIC). The National Institutes of Health is sponsoring this trial, which is called the Idiopathic Intracranial Hypertension Treatment Trial (IIHTT). Idiopathic intracranial hypertension is another name for pseudotumor cerebri.
The trial evaluates participants who have mild vision loss due to pseudotumor cerebri. The research is intended to establish evidence-based treatment strategies, to possibly determine risk factors for getting the disease, and to improve our understanding of the natural history of the disease. The study also will follow the patients who participate in the study for up to four years to evaluate the outcomes from treatment.
The primary objective of the study is to determine whether losing weight and implementing a low-sodium diet, along with taking a diuretic (medicine that reduces the amount of fluid in the body), reduces or reverses vision loss associated with pseudotumor cerebri.
Swedish Neuroscience Institute is no longer recruiting patients for this study. There are 179 patients participating in the study, which is part way through its follow-up years.
For more information
To learn more about clinical studies at the Swedish Neuroscience Institute, go to: www.swedish.org/sniresearch.