Hydrocephalus of the brain: causes, forms, types and basic characteristics
Hydrocephalus of the brain is a disease,characterized by an excess of accumulation of cerebral fluid directly in the ventricular system of the head. The term "hydrocephalus" in translation from the ancient Greek language means edema of the brain.
Most often hydrocephalus arises fromblockage (obstruction), in which there is an excessive accumulation of fluid in the brain. But also the accumulation of cerebral fluid is possible and in violation of its balance and circulation. These mechanisms are the basis for the emergence, as well as the further development of hydrocephalus.
Hydrocephalus of the brain and its form
To date, there are 3 forms:
1. General hydrocephalus with an increase in the amount of fluid in the ventricular system of the brain, as well as in the subarachnoid space.
2. Internal hydrocephalus of the brain, in which there is an excessive amount of fluid directly inside the ventricles.
3. External hydrocephalus of the brain - excess fluid in the subarachnoid space, and its content in the ventricles is normal. This form of hydrocephalus develops with brain atrophy and is much less common than others.
Disrupted circulation of cerebrospinal fluid is often associated withthe appearance of a certain obstacle on the way from the higher to the lower parts of the brain. A similar obstacle may be hematoma, swelling, adhesions or scars. The cause of obstruction may be brain trauma, neurosurgical operations, inflammatory processes or strokes. Specialists this fluid cluster is called occlusal (trapped) hydrocephalus.
In its physiology, a significant increasefluid leads to increased intracranial pressure. There is a significant compression of the vital structures, including the brainstem, which, first of all, is responsible for blood circulation and breathing. Violation of the function of this part of the brain leads to severe, most often irreversible changes. The manifestation of gross neurologic deposition may be due to impaired blood circulation in the brain due to increased intracranial pressure.
In addition, increased intracranial pressure can lead to such severe consequences as visual disturbances. There may be a decrease in vision, or in severe stages - blindness.
Occlusive hydrocephalus is characterized by strongheadaches, often accompanied by nausea and vomiting. In severe cases of the disease, there are frequent loss of consciousness with short-term disturbances of cardiac and respiratory activity.
Disturbance of fluid absorption by the cerebral membranes becomes the reason for the appearance of hyporesorptive hydrocephalus, which is subdivided into two subtypes:
1. Hypertensive brain hydrocephalus (with increased intracranial pressure). The manifestations of this subtype have similar characteristics with occlusive hydrocephalus.
2. Normotensive hydrocephalus of the brain (without increased intracranial pressure). It manifests itself in mental disorders - speech disorders, memory, orientation, etc. In patients, there are violations of control of functioning pelvic organs - spontaneous urination. Also, there are violations of statics - disorientation of limbs and body in space.
Due to a significant reduction in brainsubstance, there may also be an increased content in the cerebral cavity of the cerebrospinal fluid. In this case, the cerebrospinal fluid will occupy part of the volume of the brain with a significant decrease in the latter. This occurs with brain atrophy in the aging organism, or with diseases such as Alzheimer's syndrome, chronic intoxications and alcoholism, etc. In such cases, clinical manifestations are caused not by hydrocephalus, but solely by brain atrophy.