What is the treatment for spinal fluid leak?


Quick Answer

A cerebrospinal fluid leak usually clears up without treatment after a few days depending on the cause. Patients are usually advised to have enough sleep. Taking plenty of fluids can help ease the pain and speed up the healing of the leak, as stated by MedlinePlus.

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Full Answer

To allow the leak to heal quickly, patients are advised to avoid coughing, sneezing and carrying heavy objects. Pain relievers can also help with relieving headaches. Taking stool softeners usually helps to stave off straining, as noted by Cleveland Clinic. In some cases, a lumbar drain is put at the low back to lower the pressure of the cerebrospinal fluid at the point of the leak. This speeds healing at the area.

If the headache takes long to clear up, a procedure called blood patch may be used to close the leak. This involves using a blood clot to seal the hole and this helps to reduce the symptoms. When all these methods fail to treat the leak, a doctor may recommend a surgical procedure. The aim of the surgery is to place a graft material to seal the hole. There are several symptoms that may appear after the surgery which can be treated using antibiotics, as stated by MedlinePlus.

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