Delayed and recurrent intracranial hematomas related to disseminated intravascular clotting and fibrinolysis in head injury

Neurosurgery. 1980 Nov;7(5):445-9. doi: 10.1227/00006123-198011000-00003.


Twelve delayed or recurrent intracranial hematomas were seen in 340 patients with head injuries. Eleven of these hematomas were associated with clotting abnormalities suggesting disseminated intravascular clotting and fibrinolysis (DICF). Seven of 8 delayed traumatic intracerebral hematomas were associated with clotting abnormalities. Two of these were at ventriculostomy sites, which suggests an increased risk of bleeding in association with the insertion of ventricular catheters in patients with DICF. There were 2 delayed epidural hematomas, 1 under a fracture and the other on the side opposite a craniotomy that had been made to treat an intracerebral hematoma, and there were 2 postoperative epidural hematomas. No postoperative hematomas occurred in the absence of DICF. DICF is a major factor in the development of delayed and recurrent intracranial hematomas in patients with head injuries.

Publication types

  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Brain Injuries / blood
  • Brain Injuries / complications*
  • Brain Injuries / surgery
  • Catheterization / adverse effects
  • Cerebral Hemorrhage / etiology*
  • Cerebral Ventricles / surgery
  • Disseminated Intravascular Coagulation / etiology*
  • Fibrinolysis*
  • Hematoma / etiology*
  • Hematoma, Epidural, Cranial / etiology
  • Humans
  • Postoperative Complications
  • Prospective Studies
  • Recurrence