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Epidemiology and Direct Economic Impact of Hydrocephalus: A Community Based Study

Marc R. Del Bigio

Abstract: Background: The cost of care for hydrocephalic patients is not well established. Methods: This retrospective study for the years 1990-1996 analyzed the cost of surgical intervention and hospitalization of hydrocephalic patients in the community-based setting of Manitoba, Canada, with a stable population of 1.138 million. Results: The number of discharges with a primary diagnosis of hydrocephalus was greater than 200 annually. The mean duration of hospital stay was 12.4 to 21.9 days, depending on the etiology of hydrocephalus. Approximately 80 shunt procedures were performed annually. The total annual cost of care, excluding outpatient costs and chronic non-hospital based costs which could not be determined accurately, was estimated to be CDN$ 3.5 million in this community. Conclusions: Hydrocephalus is a chronic condition which puts substantial monetary demands on society and therefore deserves greater attention.

 

Can. J. Neurol. Sci. 1998; 25: 123-126

 


 
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