causes of intracranial pressure in children A diagnosis like intracranial pressure inchild, a sign, probably, to many parents. As a rule, after hearing this diagnosis, moms and dads are frightened. Are these fears justified or are not all that terrible? First, you need to find out what is the increased intracranial pressure in the child. Doctors mean by this term the level of pressure on the brain of cerebrospinal fluid. Cerebrospinal fluid produces small vessels of the brain. It is located in the ventricles of the brain and performs the following functions in the body:

  • eliminates the metabolic products that occur in the brain cells;
  • protects brain cells from pathogenic microorganisms;
  • protects the brain from certain external mechanical influences (strokes).

The organism of a healthy child produces about400-500 mg of cerebrospinal fluid per day. However, despite this, intracranial pressure always keeps within normal limits. This is possible due to the fact that the fluid is regularly absorbed by the vessels of the brain. From what has been said above, one can understand that intracranial pressure is directly related to the amount of spinal cord fluid produced and the degree of its absorption by the vessels of the brain. signs of increased intracranial pressure

Causes of increased intracranial pressure

Intracranial pressure, like the arterial pressure,is unstable. Its level can reach both low and high values ​​during the day. There are several reasons that can lead to increased intracranial pressure. It's screaming, crying, strong emotions and physical activities. This is especially true in young children, who often swell the fontanel with weeping. Minor changes in intracranial pressure are a completely normal natural phenomenon common to all people, both toddlers and adults. However, in some cases, it can increase quite strongly, and sometimes for a long time, which can cause disruption in the brain. In such cases, doctors are suspected of having intracranial hypertension. With increasing intracranial pressure in children, hydrocephalus is the most frequent cause of the pathology. When the cerebrospinal fluid is produced by the body in too large a quantity, or there is a violation of its absorption in the cerebral vessels, or the circulation in the ventricles does not properly occur, the child is diagnosed with hydrocephalus. Doctors divide hydrocephalus into two types: congenital and acquired disease, depending on the reasons for which it developed in the child. It is easy to guess that the child acquired by hydrocephalus can get sick under the influence of unfavorable external factors. Congenital hydrocephalus develops in the infant during the period of intrauterine development, its symptoms are manifested in the first day of the child's life. Causes that contribute to the appearance of intrauterine hydrocephalus, there are several - this is a genetic mutation, a violation of the outflow of cerebrospinal fluid, hemorrhages in the brain. But do not despair in this situation. The disease is diagnosed fairly quickly, and timely treatment will help the child grow and develop normally, not yielding to the development of their healthy peers. diagnosis of the disease

Signs of increased intracranial pressure

Doctors can not always notice the beginningdisease. And the point here is not in their professionalism, just the doctor sees the baby less often than his parents. Therefore, father and mother should be very careful not to miss the onset of the disease. Symptoms of intracranial pressure include:

  • Change the size and shape of the head. It becomes unnaturally large, especially noticeable in the forehead. The rate of change in the shape of the head in all children is different, so you need to consult a doctor already with the slightest suspicion. However, an increase in the child's head, most often, can be detected only when measured. Therefore it is important to pass all preventive examinations at the pediatrician in time.
  • Suspicion of hydrocephalus can causeconstant swelling of the fontanel and the distance between the seams of the skull. In a healthy child, the fontanel should be slightly sunken or slightly convex. If the fontanel swells constantly, regardless of whether the child is at rest or tense, it is worth worrying.
  • Symptom Gref, in medicine calleda symptom of the "setting sun". It may show up when you carefully examine the baby's eyes. In the event that a child has a disease such as hydrocephalus, his view is almost always lowered, and parents can view the scleral band between the upper eyelid and the pupil. In children with hydrocephalus, the venous network is almost always clearly visible.
  • Children suffering from hydrocephalus, usually, unnecessarilytearful and irritable: they can cry for quite a long time and very monotonously. Such sudden outbursts of emotion can be replaced by severe drowsiness and lethargy.
  • In the absence of proper treatment, children suffering fromhydrocephalus, may significantly lag behind in development from healthy. They are much later than their peers, start to hold their heads, sit down, crawl and walk. And the weight of a child can be much lower than normal, because such children often and plentifully regurgitate.
  • Although for the sake of justice, it must be noted,that the increase in intracranial pressure can be a sign not only of hydrocephalus, but also of many other diseases. Such diseases include craniocerebral trauma, hemorrhage, tumors, various infectious diseases (encephalitis, meningitis) and genetic disorders. Therefore, children suffering from increased intracranial pressure should be examined as soon as possible from the relevant specialists. increased pressure in children

    Treatment of this pathology

    As mentioned earlier, in no case canto leave intracranial pressure without attention. If you do not normalize it in time, the child can slow down the development of the brain, and in especially difficult cases - even completely stop. This leads to such grave consequences as mental retardation and severe disability of the child. Most often, medications do not have the proper effect. That is why they are usually appointed as a temporary measure when preparing a child for surgical intervention. By the way, these drugs are often prescribed to children who are mistakenly diagnosed with increased intracranial pressure. However, this is not so rare, but we'll talk about this later. To treat true hydrocephalus or other brain diseases that are accompanied by increased intracranial pressure, surgical intervention is used. Its main goal is to install a shunt, which is a special tube that removes from the brain excess volumes of cerebrospinal fluid. It is diverted either into the abdominal cavity or into the heart cavity. The shunt can be installed at a very different time from a few weeks to several years of life. As a rule, such an operation gives a tremendous effect: the children are on the recovery very quickly. Very often parents ask doctors about whether the shunt prevents the baby from getting into the shunt. This concern is understandable, but unreasonable. Children who have undergone a bypass operation can lead a normal full life.

    What not to do with increased intracranial pressure

    Sometimes the parents of children who are diagnosed"Intracranial pressure", try to cope with the disease independently with the help of various folk methods of treatment or use medicines that can harm a child's health. Do this in no case, because increased intracranial pressure in children under the age of the year is extremely dangerous and indicates the presence of a serious disease. Especially do not particularly hope for physiotherapy, massage, vitamin therapy, exercise therapy and similar methods, unable to help the child in the treatment of this disease. They are used only as a means of rehabilitation after surgery; they help the children to recover as quickly as possible. All procedures are selected individually, taking into account all the features of the disease and the state of health of the baby. treatment of intracranial pressure in children

    Why this diagnosis is put so often

    It has already been said that doctors are very oftenare reinsured, diagnosing increased intracranial pressure in children. Why is this happening? Is it because of the low qualification of the doctor? Do not hurry to blame the doctors for incompetence, they are in many ways right. After all, increased intracranial pressure in children is not a separate disease, but merely a symptom of a serious illness. That is why the doctor and has no right to leave without attention signs that even remotely indicate the possibility of increasing intracranial pressure. Otherwise, you can simply lose sight of the onset of any disease, because of which a child may not receive timely treatment. And since there are a lot of signs indicating that the child has this symptom, doctors are reinsured and make the appropriate diagnosis. Confirm it immediately, of course, will not work, because it requires a variety of complex research that can not be done in one day. Most often doctors need more than one month to make a final diagnosis. All the time during the examination the child should be under the strict supervision of a neuropathologist and pediatrician. In the event that a child does have such a disease as increased intracranial pressure, he will necessarily have some signs of this disease or another disease that has led to an increase in intracranial pressure. As a rule, the final diagnosis is made by the end of the first year: signs of pathology either completely disappear, or the cause of this pathology development is revealed. In any case, if there are signs of increased blood pressure in children, parents should not panic, first of all you need to see a doctor and calm down, because panic is not an assistant in this case. The only true solution in this case is the search for a good neurologist, who can completely entrust the health of the child. After all, in the near future, parents and a doctor will cooperate very closely. Only their joint efforts will help the child grow up healthy.