Background: Central fever is common after aneurysmal subarachnoid hemorrhage (aSAH) and may delay ventriculoperitoneal shunt (VPS) placement. Objective: We hypothesize that drain-dependent aSAH patients with central fever or persistent fever after treatment of an identifiable cause are not at an increased risk of infectious VPS failure. Methods: Patient demographics, radiographic characteristics, temperature, incidence of infection, and shunt failure were prospectively recorded in a consecutive cohort of aSAH patients. Central fever was defined as temperature higher than 38.3°C with no identifiable cause. Results: Of 580 patients, 61 (11%) were drain dependent. Central fever developed in 18, 35 had fever of known etiology, and 8 remained afebrile. There was no shunt failure at discharge, and 2 failures (3.2%) at follow-up were attributed to infection. One patient with central fever (6%), none with fever of identifiable etiology, and 1 (13%) with no fever had infectious shunt failures at a median follow-up of 10.2 ± 3.6 months (P > .05). Nine patients with central fever (50%) and 6 (17%) who were treated for fever of known etiologies had persistent fever at shunt placement. Patients who were febrile on the day of surgery had similar infectious shunt failure rates at discharge compared with those who were afebrile (0% vs 0%; P = 1.0). Similarly, febrile and afebrile patients at VPS insertion had comparable rates of infectious shunt failure at follow-up (7% vs 2%; P = .43). Conclusion: aSAH patients with central fever or persistent fever after treatment of fever of identifiable etiology are not at an increased risk of infectious VPS failure.
- Central fever
- Subarachnoid hemorrhage