Delayed intracranial hemorrhage after trauma

Biswadev Mitra, Tomi Ruggles, Jarrel Seah, Charne Miller, Mark C. Fitzgerald

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Introduction: Delayed Intracranial Hemorrhage (D-ICH), defined as finding of ICH on subsequent imaging after a normal computed tomography of the brain (CTB), is a feared complication after head trauma. The aim of this study was to determine the incidence and severity of D-ICH. Methods: This retrospective cohort study included patients that presented directly from the scene of injury to an adult major trauma center from Jan 2013 to Dec 2018. Results: There were 6536 patients who had an initial normal CTB and 23 (0.3%; 95%CI: 0.20–0.47) had D-ICH. There were 653 patients who had a repeat CTB (incidence of D-ICH 3.5%; 95%CI: 2.2–5.2). There was no significant association of D-ICH with age>65 years (OR 1.33; 95%CI: 0.54–3.29), presenting GCS <15 (OR 1.21; 95% CI: 0.52–2.80) and anti-platelet medications (OR 0.68; 95%CI: 0.26–1.74). Exposure to anti-coagulant medications was associated with lower odds of D-ICH (OR 0.23; 95%CI: 0.05–0.99). All cases of D-ICH were diffuse injury type II lesions on the Marshall classification. There were no cases that underwent neurosurgical intervention and no deaths were attributed to D-ICH. Conclusions: These results question observation of patients with head injury in hospital after a normal CTB for the sole purpose of excluding D-ICH.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)484–489
Number of pages6
JournalBrain Injury
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 2021


  • brain injuries
  • computed tomography
  • delayed
  • intracerebral hemorrhage
  • Wound and injuries

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