BACKGROUND: We evaluated external ventricular drain placement for factors associated with placement accuracy. Data were acquired using an electronic health record data requisition tool.
METHOD: Medical records of all patients who underwent ventriculostomy from 2003 to 2010 were identified and evaluated. Patient demographics, diagnosis, type of guidance and number of catheter passes were searched for and recorded. Post-procedural hemorrhage and/or infection were identified. A grading scale was used to classify accuracy of catheter placements. A multiple logistic regression model was developed to assess features associated with accurate catheter placement.
RESULTS: One hundred nine patients who underwent 111 ventriculostomies from 2003 to 2010 were identified. Patient diagnoses were classified into vascular (63 %), tumor (21 %), trauma (14 %), and cyst (2 %). Procedures were performed freehand in 90 (81 %), with the Ghajar guide in 17 (15 %), and with image guidance in 4 (4 %) patients. Eighty-eight (79 %) catheters were placed in the correct location. Trauma patients were more likely to have catheters misplaced (p = 0.007) whereas patients in other diagnostic categories were not significantly associated with misplaced catheters. Post-procedural hemorrhage was noted in 2 (1.8 %) patients on post-procedural imaging studies. Five (4.5 %) definite and 6 (5.4 %) suspected infections were identified.
CONCLUSIONS: External ventricular drain placement can be performed accurately in most patients. Patients with trauma are more likely to have catheters misplaced. Further development is required to identify and evaluate procedure outcomes using an electronic health record repository.
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