Lumbar and ventricular CSF concentration of homovanillic acid (HVA) and 5-hydroxy-indole-acetic acid (5-HIAA) have been determined in 13 patients admitted to hospital for suspected normal pressure hydrocephalus. Low values of HVA in lumbar CSF were found in all patients with reduced CSF absorption and CSF flow inversion. The HVA lumbar concentration remained low after shunt procedure; it increased if obstruction of the shunt occurred. The ventricular CSF concentration of HVA was normal before surgery; it became higher, in two cases, after surgery. No important variations were found in the lumbar and ventricular CSF concentration of 5-HIAA. The possible mechanisms and diagnostic value of these findings are discussed.
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