Ventriculoperitoneal shunt migration into the pulmonary artery

Case contributed by Christof Igler


Routine follow-up after treatment with a ventriculoperitoneal shunt 16 months ago.

Patient Data

Age: 65 years
Gender: Male

Chest and Abdomen X-ray


The initial x-rays show correct intrabdominal position of the VPS post-surgery.

Chest and Abdomen X-ray (16 months later)


Migration of a ventriculoperitoneal shunt (VPS) into both pulmonary arteries within 16 months.

The CTPA shows the catheter in both pulmonary arteries, without any thrombosis.

Case Discussion

The migration of a VPS into both trunks of the pulmonary artery is a very rare complication.

The cause for the catheter migration was a penetration of the right subclavian vein, during the initial shunt placement.

Subsequent venous flow and negative intrathoracic pressure leads to the migration of the catheter.

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