'Bath-plug' technique for the endoscopic management of cerebrospinal fluid leaks

P. J. Wormald, Mike McDonogh
1997 Journal of Laryngology and Otology  
In the past cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) leaks were managed via a craniotomy with intradural repair. With the advent of endoscopic sinus surgery, transnasal repair has become more popular. The comparatively low morbidity and high success rate of endoscopic repair has made it the treatment of choice for CSF leak repair. As more surgeons practice endoscopic sinus surgery, the incidence of iatrogenic CSF leaks has increased. It is important that endoscopic sinus surgeons be aware of the techniques
more » ... closing such leaks. The aim of this study is to present a new technique for the endoscopic repair of CSF leaks. Since the technique was devised the authors have used the technique on six patients. All patients had lumbar drains inserted and five patients had intra-thecal fluorescein inserted for location of the leak. All repairs have been successful with an average follow-up of 13 months. The technique consists of introducing a fat plug with a specifically secured vicryl suture into the intradural space and placing traction on the suture to seal the defect much as a bath plug seals a bath. There were no complications in any of the patients either intra-or post-operatively. The difficulties and possible complications of the technique as well as the use of a lumbar drain and intra-thecal fluorescein are discussed.
doi:10.1017/s0022215100139295 fatcat:6z6bufjlezguzpf2kxeixrxnzy