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Johannes Leitgeb, Walter Mauritz, Alexandra Brazinova, Ivan Janciak, Marek Majdan, Ingrid Wilbacher and Martin Rusnak


In this paper, the authors' goal was to identify factors contributing to outcomes after severe traumatic brain injury (TBI) due to acute subdural hematoma (SDH).


Between February 2002 and April 2010, 17 Austrian centers prospectively enrolled 863 patients with moderate and severe TBI into observational studies. Data regarding accident, treatment, and outcomes were collected. Data sets from patients who had severe TBI (Glasgow Coma Scale score < 9) and acute SDH were selected. Six-month outcomes were classified as “favorable” if the Glasgow Outcome Scale (GOS) scores were 5 or 4, and they were classified as “unfavorable” if GOS scores were 3 or less. The Rotterdam score was used to classify CT findings, and the scores published by Hukkelhoven et al. were used to estimate the predicted rates of death and of unfavorable outcomes. Univariate (Fisher exact test, t-test, chi-square test) and multivariate (logistic regression) statistics were used to identify factors associated with hospital mortality and favorable outcome.


Of the 738 patients with severe TBI, 360 (49%) had acute SDH. Of these, 168 (46.7%) died in the hospital, 67 (18.6%) survived with unfavorable outcome, and 116 (32.2%) survived with favorable outcome. Long-term outcome was unknown in 9 survivors (2.5%). Mortality rates predicted by the Rotterdam CT score showed good correlation with observed mortality rates. According to the Hukkelhoven scores, observed/predicted ratios for mortality and unfavorable outcome were 1.09 and 1.02, respectively.


Age, severity of TBI, and neurological status were the main factors influencing outcomes after severe TBI due to acute SDH. Nonoperative management was associated with significantly higher mortality.