Hematoma enlargement in spontaneous intracerebral hemorrhage

Yukihiko Fujii Department of Neurosurgery, Brain Research Institute, Niigata University, and Department of Neurosurgery, Kuwana Hospital, Niigata, Japan

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Ryuichi Tanaka Department of Neurosurgery, Brain Research Institute, Niigata University, and Department of Neurosurgery, Kuwana Hospital, Niigata, Japan

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Shigekazu Takeuchi Department of Neurosurgery, Brain Research Institute, Niigata University, and Department of Neurosurgery, Kuwana Hospital, Niigata, Japan

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Tetsuo Koike Department of Neurosurgery, Brain Research Institute, Niigata University, and Department of Neurosurgery, Kuwana Hospital, Niigata, Japan

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Takashi Minakawa Department of Neurosurgery, Brain Research Institute, Niigata University, and Department of Neurosurgery, Kuwana Hospital, Niigata, Japan

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Osamu Sasaki Department of Neurosurgery, Brain Research Institute, Niigata University, and Department of Neurosurgery, Kuwana Hospital, Niigata, Japan

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✓ In order to evaluate the incidence and risk factors of hematoma enlargement in spontaneous intracerebral hemorrhage (ICH), 419 cases of ICH were reviewed. The first computerized tomography (CT) scan was performed within 24 hours of onset and the second within 24 hours of admission; a blood sample was taken for laboratory examination within 1 hour of admission. In 60 patients (14.3%) the second CT scan showed an enlarged hematoma. The incidence of enlargement significantly decreased with time (p < 0.05) and significantly increased with the severity of liver dysfunction and the volume of the hematoma on the first CT scan. Patients with an irregularly shaped hematoma had a higher risk of hematoma growth than those with a round hematoma. In addition, patients with hematoma enlargement were more likely to have coagulation abnormalities (low platelet counts and low levels of fibrinogen, α2-antiplasmin activity and platelet aggregation). Moreover, hematoma growth was associated with a poor clinical outcome.

It is concluded that patients admitted to a hospital within 6 hours of onset of ICH, especially those admitted within 2 hours, and patients with liver dysfunction or irregularly shaped large hematomas should be closely observed for at least 6 hours after onset in preparation for emergency surgery, since the risk of hematoma growth in these circumstances is high.

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