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Conservative management of extra-axial hematomas diagnosed by CT

, : Conservative management of extra-axial hematomas diagnosed by CT. Neuroradiology 41(12): 875-881

Our purpose was to assess the role of serial CT in recently traumatized patients with clinically stable extra-axial intracranial hematomas (EACH) and a midline shift of less than 0.5 cm. A retrospective review of 91 imaging studies in 41 patients (with 45 EACH) was done to assess the time between trauma and CT; the presence and type of skull fracture; the volume, type, and location of the EACH; the presence of associated edema and/or contusion. Over a 19-day follow-up, 11% of the dense EACH increased in volume and 27% decreased. An adjacent skull fracture was seen most frequently in patients with a decrease in EACH volume. Clinical data remain the key to determining the need for neurosurgical intervention in patients with EACH. Follow-up CT afforded no data which altered the medical management of these patients. However, it may be said to have alerted the clinician to an increase in the size of the EACH in 11% of cases, which could mandate close observation of this group.


PMID: 10639660

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