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Stevens NT, Greene CM, O'Gara JP, Bayston R, Sattar MT, Farrell M, Humphreys H
Journal of neurosurgery
Ventriculoperitoneal shunt-related infections caused by Staphylococcus epidermidis: pathogenesis and implications for treatment.
Optional Fields
The insertion of medical devices, such as intraventricular shunts, is often complicated by infection leading to ventriculitis. Frequently, such infections result from colonisation and subsequent biofilm formation on the surfaces of the shunts by Staphylococcus epidermidis. The pathogenesis of neurosurgical shunt-related infection is complex with interactions between the pathogen, the device and the unique local immunological environment of the central nervous system (CNS). An ability to form biofilm, the main virulence determinant of Staphylococcus epidermidis, facilitates protection of the organism from the host defences while still initiating an immunological response. The presence of the blood brain barrier (BBB) and the biofilm itself also complicates treatment, which presents many challenges when managing shunt infections. A greater understanding of the interplay between S. epidermidis and the CNS could potentially improve the diagnosis, treatment and management of such infections. This review describes the pathogenesis, treatment and implications of S. epidermidis ventriculoperitoneal shunt-related infections, concentrating on recent research and the implications for treatment.
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