A total of 100 infants were enrolled in a trial with 51 randomly assigned to endoscopic surgery and 49 randomly assigned to receive a shunt. The trial took place at Child-Help's partner in Mbale, CURE Children's Hospital of Uganda.
IF and Child-help expert Dr. Benjamin C. Warf, professor of neurosurgery, Harvard Medical School, is one of the first authors on this paper, together with Dr. Abhaya V. Kulkarni, and Dr. Steven J. Schiff. They found no significant difference between the babies with shunts and those receiving endoscopic surgery for cognition, motor skills or language skills.
"Ultimately the answer for hydrocephalus will be in prevention," said Schiff. "Until we can get rid of these infections – we think there are about 400,000 cases per year worldwide and up to half may be caused by infection – surgical approaches are the only answer."
Full study available at: http://www.nejm.org/doi/10.1056/NEJMoa1707568