What is an Ommaya reservoir? What is a Rickham reservoir?
An Ommaya/Rickham reservoir is a channel through which fluids can be put into, or removed from, areas in the brain or spinal cord.
It has two parts:
1. a small dome shaped container that is put under the scalp or spine.
2. a small tube (catheter) leading off from the dome.
The end of the tube may be directed into:
The spinal cord
One of the 4 spaces in the brain called “ventricles" The cells in the ventricles produce Cerebral Spinal Fluid (CSF). The CSF flows around the brain and spinal cord to provide a protective cushion. CSF has nutrients that feed the brain.
The space in which CSF flows around the spinal cord (subarachnoid space).How is it used?
Unlike shunts in the brain, the Ommaya/Rickham reservoir’s main use is not as a drain for fluids causing on-going pressure in the brain (ICP). The Ommaya/Rickham reservoir is used:
To deliver medications, such as chemotherapy drugs, directly into the CSF. This is a way to bathe brain or spinal cord tumours in a powerful, and therefore more effective, form of chemotherapy.
To keep draining and treating with medications, brain cysts that cannot be removed surgically.
To take samples of CSF for testing.How is an Ommaya/Rickham Reservoir put in?
The surgeon must position the Ommaya/Rickham reservoir under the scalp or into the spine and make a small hole through the skull or into the spine for the tubing.
It can be used in the surgical treatment of IIHMore informationOmmaya ReservoirOmmaya Reservoir Placement Animation