An 18th century report of a device for repeated extracranial drainage of cerebrospinal fluid in the treatment of congenital hydrocephalus is reviewed. On 15th October 1744, the French surgeon Claude-Nicolas Le Cat (1700-1768) introduced a specially invented canula into the lateral ventricle of a newborn boy with hydrocephalus. The canula was used as a tap and was left in place for 5 days, until the death of the child. This procedure should be seen as the first documented description of a device for repeated ventricular taps in the treatment of hydrocephalus. Copyright

Claude-Nicolas Le Cat, Historical review, Hydrocephalus, Ventricular drainage
dx.doi.org/10.1159/000070872, hdl.handle.net/1765/66738
Pediatric Neurosurgery
Department of Neurosurgery

Kompanje, E.J.O, & Delwel, E.J. (2003). The first description of a device for repeated external ventricular drainage in the treatment of congenital hydrocephalus, invented in 1744 by Claude-Nicolas Le Cat. Pediatric Neurosurgery, 39(1), 10–13. doi:10.1159/000070872