Occult cervical (C1-2) dural tear causing bilateral recurrent subdural hematomas and repaired with cervical epidural blood patch

J Neurosurg Spine. 2008 Nov;9(5):483-7. doi: 10.3171/SPI.2008.9.11.483.


The authors report the case of a 56-year-old previously healthy man who presented with a 4-month history of postural headache accompanied by nausea and vomiting. The results of initial imaging studies of the brain were normal. Repeated MR imaging demonstrated bilateral subdural hematomas which were drained and reaccumulated over a period of time. Spinal myelography revealed a cerebrospinal fluid leak at the C1-2 level. A cervical epidural blood patch, with repeated injections of 10 ml autologous blood at the site of the leak, dramatically improved the headache within 24 hours and eliminated the recurrent subdural hematomas. The results of follow-up computed tomography of the brain at 1, 4, 8, and 16 weeks were normal, and at 1-year follow-up the patient was completely free of symptoms and working.

Publication types

  • Case Reports

MeSH terms

  • Blood Patch, Epidural*
  • Cervical Vertebrae
  • Hematoma, Subdural, Intracranial / diagnosis
  • Hematoma, Subdural, Intracranial / etiology*
  • Hematoma, Subdural, Intracranial / surgery
  • Humans
  • Intracranial Hypotension / diagnosis
  • Intracranial Hypotension / etiology
  • Intracranial Hypotension / therapy
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Recurrence
  • Subdural Effusion / complications*
  • Subdural Effusion / diagnosis
  • Subdural Effusion / therapy*