Ventriculoperitoneal shunt

Ventriculoperitoneal (VP) shunts are a device used to shunt cerebrospinal fluid in the treatment of hydrocephalus.

As the name suggests, a catheter is placed with its tip in the ventricle. The external portion of the catheter is connected to a valve that regulates the flow of CSF based on a preset pressure. The distal catheter is tunnelled under the skin and into the peritoneal cavity. 

Several other similar devices can be involved in the shunting of fluid from one cavity under pressure to another cavity of lower pressure:


Recognized complications include 1,2:

  • infection
  • shunt malfunction
    • disconnections/breaks (most common in the neck)
    • migration
    • leakage
    • shunt over drainage and slit-ventricle syndrome
  • intracranial peri-shunt fluid collection with edema 3
  • distal complications

See also

Share article

Article information

rID: 22789
Section: Gamuts
Synonyms or Alternate Spellings:
  • VP shunt
  • Ventriculoperitoneal shunts
  • Ventriculo-peritoneal shunt
  • VP shunts

Support Radiopaedia and see fewer ads

Cases and figures

  • Case 1: VP shunt - 3D surface rendered
    Drag here to reorder.
  • Case 2: with shunt malfunction
    Drag here to reorder.
  • Case 3: with hepatic CSF pseudocyst
    Drag here to reorder.
  • Case 4: discontinous shunt tubing
    Drag here to reorder.
  • Case 5: programmable shunt
    Drag here to reorder.
  • Case 6: tube fracture
    Drag here to reorder.
  • Case 7: CSF overshunting associated with bilateral subdural hematoma
    Drag here to reorder.
  • Case 8: broken intracranial shunt
    Drag here to reorder.
  • Case 9: VP shunt disconnection
    Drag here to reorder.
  • Updating… Please wait.

     Unable to process the form. Check for errors and try again.

     Thank you for updating your details.