Glossary Entry: Ventricular Drainage Catheter


Definition: A ventricular drainage catheter is a medical device used to drain cerebrospinal fluid from the brain’s ventricles, usually to relieve increased intracranial pressure or to monitor the fluid’s composition.

Detailed Description

Types and Variations

Variations: Ventricular drainage catheters come in various sizes and designs, including external ventricular drainage (EVD) and internal ventricular drainage (IVD) systems. Each variation has specific applications based on the patient’s condition and the medical context.


Common Uses: Ventricular drainage catheters are commonly used in cases of traumatic brain injury, intraventricular hemorrhage, hydrocephalus, and other conditions that cause an accumulation of cerebrospinal fluid in the brain.

Insertion and Placement

Procedure: The insertion and placement of a ventricular drainage catheter should be performed using aseptic technique. The specific insertion procedure may vary based on the type of system used. For example, the Seldinger technique is often employed for the placement of an EVD catheter.

Clinical Considerations

Potential Complications

Risks: Potential complications associated with ventricular drainage catheters include infection, bleeding, blockage, and malpositioning. Careful monitoring and prompt intervention are crucial to prevent and manage these complications.

Care and Maintenance

Maintenance Requirements: Regular monitoring of the catheter’s function, as well as proper cleaning and dressing changes at the insertion site, are important for ensuring the device’s optimal performance and reducing the risk of infection.

Additional Information

Related Devices

Associated Terms: Other related devices or accessories commonly used in conjunction with ventricular drainage catheters include drainage bags, pressure monitoring systems, and ventricular access kits.

Innovations and Advancements

Recent Developments: Recent advancements in ventricular drainage catheters include the integration of antimicrobial materials and improved catheter design to reduce infection rates and enhance patient safety.

Regulatory and Safety Notes

Regulations: The use of ventricular drainage catheters should adhere to relevant regulatory guidelines and safety protocols to minimize the risk of complications and ensure patient well-being.