The authors present a single-institution experience in shunt treatment for arachnoid cysts (ACs).
Between January 2003 and January 2005, 62 patients with ACs underwent cystoperitoneal (CP) shunt placement at the authors' institution. All patients were evaluated with CT or MRI studies and had regular follow-up examinations.
Forty-six cysts (74%) were within the sylvian fissure, 8 (13%) were in the cerebral convexity, and 8 (13%) were infratentorial. A CP shunt was placed in all patients. Follow-up imaging studies showed that 59 (95%) of 62 ACs reduced in size during a mean postoperative follow-up period of 6.5 years (range 6–8 years). Although a CP shunt was effective in achieving early obliteration, shunt dependency occurred within the patient group (13%). Shunt revision for various reasons was performed in 16 patients (26%).
Shunt placement is a safe and effective surgical treatment for symptomatic ACs in children, although efforts should be made to decrease complications in the procedure.