Laparoscopic-Assisted Versus Mini-Open Laparotomy for Ventriculoperitoneal Shunt Placement in the Medicare Population

Syed I. Khalid, Ravi S. Nunna, Samantha Maasarani, Rachyl M. Shanker, Mandana Behbahani, Corbin P. Edmondson, Ankit I. Mehta, Samir K. Gupta, Edie Y. Chan, Alfonso Torquati, Richard W. Byrne, Owoicho Adogwa

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Scopus citations


BACKGROUND: Placement of the distal shunt catheter into the peritoneum during ventriculoperitoneal shunt (VPS) surgery can be done with either laparoscopic assistance or laparotomy. OBJECTIVE: To compare outcomes in laparoscopic-assisted vs laparotomy for placement of VPS in the Medicare population. METHODS: Patients undergoing VPS placement, between 2004 and 2014, were identified by International Classification of Disease, Ninth Revision and Current Procedural Terminology codes in the Medicare database. Demographic data including age, sex, comorbidities, and indications were collected. Six- A nd twelve-month complication rates were analyzed. RESULTS: A total of 1966 (3.2%) patients underwent laparoscopic-assisted VPS and 60 030 (96.8%) patients underwent nonlaparoscopic-assisted VPS placement. Compared with traditional open VPS placement, the laparoscopic approach was associated with decreased odds of distal revision at 6- A nd 12-mo postoperatively (6 mo: Odds ratio [OR] = 0.41, 95% confidence interval [CI]: 0.21-0.74; 12 mo: OR = 0.60, 95% CI: 0.39-0.94). At 6- A nd 12-mo postoperatively, multivariable regression analysis demonstrated increased odds of distal revision in patients with a body mass index (BMI) > 30 Kg/M2, history of open abdominal surgery, and history of laparoscopic abdominal surgery. Additionally, history of prior abdominal surgery and BMI > 30 Kg/M2 were significantly associated with increase odds of shunt infection at 6 and 12-mo, respectively. CONCLUSION: In the largest retrospective analysis to date, patients with a history of abdominal surgery and obesity were found to be at increased risk of infection and distal revision after VPS placement. However, the laparoscopic approach for abdominal placement of the distal catheter was associated with reduced rates of distal revision in this population, suggesting an avenue for reducing complications in well-selected patients.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)812-818
Number of pages7
Issue number4
StatePublished - Apr 1 2021


  • Cerebrospinal fluids
  • Hydrocephalus
  • Hydrocephalus, Normal pressure
  • Laparoscopic assisted surgery
  • Medicare
  • Minilaparotomy
  • Ventriculoperitoneal shunt

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery
  • Clinical Neurology


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