Chronic subdural hematoma: pathophysiological basis for treatment

Br J Neurosurg. 1991;5(5):467-73. doi: 10.3109/02688699108998475.


Fifty-three consecutive adult patients treated surgically for chronic subdural hematoma are reviewed. The current understanding of the pathogenesis of chronic subdural hematoma is discussed. In the current neurosurgical literature, wide discrepancies exist, in patients treated by burr-hole evacuation, regarding the rate of subdural recollection. Possible factors responsible for these discrepancies include (1) failure to recognize and properly treat multiloculated chronic subdural hematomas, (2) too aggressive a surgical approach toward persistent CT-demonstrated but asymptomatic subdural residual or recurrent collections, and (3) failure to use corticosteroids in the post-operative management of patients with persistent or recurrent symptoms as a step prior to re-operation. A prospective controlled clinical trial of glucocorticoids in chronic subdural hematoma is needed to establish their place in the management of this condition.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Chronic Disease
  • Combined Modality Therapy
  • Dexamethasone / therapeutic use
  • Drainage / instrumentation
  • Female
  • Follow-Up Studies
  • Hematoma, Subdural / diagnosis
  • Hematoma, Subdural / physiopathology*
  • Hematoma, Subdural / surgery*
  • Humans
  • Magnetic Resonance Imaging
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Neurologic Examination
  • Postoperative Complications / diagnosis
  • Tomography, X-Ray Computed
  • Trephining*


  • Dexamethasone