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Hydrocephalus Awareness Week 2020 - Claye

12th February 2020


Claye's Story...

Hydrocephalus is not predictable -
take each day as it comes.

The pregnancy had been a worrying time and we were delighted to be able to meet Claye, when he arrived – six weeks early – in September 2018.

He was put forward for shunt surgery in his first week and he came back really well from surgery. We hoped at that stage that he wouldn’t need another operation until he was much older but after a month he became unwell and was rushed back to hospital as the shunt had become blocked.

In all, Claye has now undergone 19 separate operations to manage his shunt and has spent much of his life under the care of the neuroscience ward, at Sheffield Children’s Hospital.

We take each day as it comes and we’re lucky to have such an amazing hospital on the doorstep – the staff there do everything to make life easier for Claye and our whole family. But, even with their incredible support, repeated admissions are extremely stressful. If we can avoid even a fraction of those by limiting the risk of infection, it would make a massive difference. It goes without saying that we’d do anything to help reduce Claye’s risks – that’s why we’re so excited about the new type of shunt.

Following initial research funded by Shine, a novel process – the BACTISEAL catheter – was developed, which allowed shunts to be impregnated with two slow-release antibiotics during manufacture.

A subsequent study – the BASICS trial – showed that the BACTISEAL ® catheter offered a remarkable breakthrough, as overall infection rates dropped from 6% to 2%, and in some patient groups, were even completely eliminated.


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