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Nursing Care of Children and Families

Key Concepts:

Terms in this set (177)

Infection: Greatest risk 1-2 months after placement.
S/S: In a baby with a shunt, the following signs may mean an infection: fever, poor feeding or loss of appetite, vomiting (throwing up), neck stiffnes, sleepy (hard to wake up) or not as awake as usual, large head (your family doctor can measure this), bulging "soft spot" (fontanelle) on the top of the head, seeming irritable (cries easily or without reason), redness or puffiness of the skin on top of the shunt tubing and at incision (cut) sites, abdomen (belly) pain, fluid leaking from the shunt incision sites, seizures, noticeable scalp veins, slowness at reaching milestones (for example, slow to roll over, slow to sit), "sunset" eyes, when the eyes appear to be always looking down and are not able to look up

In a child, the following are also possible signs of infection or other shunt problems: headaches, nausea and vomiting, fever, neck stiffness, tiredness (sleeping more than usual, difficult to wake up, does not want to play as usual), seeming irritable, changes in personality, behaviour, or school performance, loss of coordination, seizures, changes in vision, redness or puffiness of the skin on top of the shunt tubing and at incision (cut) sites
abdomen (belly) pain, fluid leaking from the shunt incision sites

Malfunction: Most common is mechanical obstruction.
S/S of shunt failure:
Apnea
Headaches.
Vomiting.
Lethargy (sleepiness)
Irritability.
Swelling or redness along the shunt tract.
Decreased school performance.
Periods of confusion.
Seizures.