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Headaches
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Headaches

My daughter had surgery on a chiari malformation about 14 months ago.  As a result of a leak in patch, she had a VP shunt inserted to drain a build up of spinal fluid.

Since that time she has had headaches every day, sometimes spending the entire day (or several days in a row) in a dark room.  She was hospitalized for 5 days in July for bad headaches and we were told they were rebound headaches.  We promptly took her off of over the counter headache medication (which by the way, we had been told to give her by her neurologist). We were also told at this time that they doubt she has hydrocephalus and that the shunt is probably not necessary.   But the headaches continue.  She is being treated for migraines, each medication she is given works for a while for the severe headaches, but eventually stops.  Meanwhile, she has headaches almost all of the time in the location where her shunt was inserted.   She also has frequent pains in her stomache from the shunt poking (she can feel the shunt).

We go back to the neurosurgeon on Monday.  HOwever, he tells me these probelms aren't related to her surgeries.  The neurologist told me that she is on the last medicine he has to give her for the migraines.

Has anyone else experienced headaches from their shunt that weren't related to pressure?  Any suggestions?
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4 Comments Post a Comment
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Avatar_n_tn
I have had headaches and feel the shunt poking in my stomach all the time.  Hopefully I'll adjust.  I just got my shunt in Dec.  had 2 revisions in a week.  I am sorry for what your child is going through, but I have been told there is an adjustment period for this.  Lots of people have these shunts and do well, so I'm hoping for the best for us! Neurosurgeon hasn't been a lot of help with answering questions.  He keeps saying I'm supposed to live a normal life...period. by the way.  I'm 53.
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Avatar_n_tn
You should not be able to feel the shunt the shunt in your stomach, That is a problem,that was one of the main things i was told to watch for along with sever headache pain. Please get a secant opinion.I don't know how old she is but may look into a pediatric neurosurgeon.
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Avatar_m_tn
Hi,
My son was born premature and need a VP shunt when he was a few days old. I've lost count on the number of revision of VP shunt. His last revision was on 2007 and he is 6 yrs old now. So far he don't complain of any headache.
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Avatar_n_tn
My son is 15 and has had a shunt since birth.  What your daughter is experiencing is NOT normal.  He is on shunt number 18 due to issues with infections, high protien levels... I think you need to find another neurosurgeon.  I don't know where you are but if you are in NJ let me know and I will give you an awesome name.  If your daughter is a child, then she needs a pediatric neurosurgeon as kids are much much different than adults especially in this area.

Kris
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