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Revista Brasileira de Anestesiologia

Print version ISSN 0034-7094


AMORIM, Jane Auxiliadora et al. Intracranial subdural hematoma post-spinal anesthesia: report of two cases and review of 33 cases in the literature. Rev. Bras. Anestesiol. [online]. 2010, vol.60, n.6, pp.624-629. ISSN 0034-7094.

BACKGROUND AND OBJECTIVES: Intracranial subdural hematoma is a rare complication of spinal anesthesia. We report two cases of women who developed chronic subdural hematoma post-spinal anesthesia diagnosed after prolonged clinical evolution of post-dural puncture headache (PDPH) and we analyze other 33 cases found on literature review. CASE REPORTS: In 35 patients (ages 20-88 years, 19 males), 14 were older than 60 years (40%), of which 12 (86%) were males. The relationship is inverted in the group of younger patients (< 60 years), in which we observed twice as many women (14:7). Two peaks of higher incidence were observed: 30-39 years (31%) and 60-69 years (29%). The length of time from the beginning of symptoms until diagnosis ranged from 4 hours to 29 weeks. Headache was the main complaint in 26/35 (74.3%) patients; changes in the level of consciousness in 14/35 (40.0%); vomiting in 11/35 (31,4%); hemiplegia or hemiparesis in 8/35 (22.9%); diplopia or VI nerve paresis in 5/35 (14.3%); and language disorders in 4/35 (11.4%). Contributing factors included: pregnancy, multiple punctures, use of anticoagulants, intracranial vascular abnormalities, and brain atrophy. In 15 cases, a contributing factor was not mentioned. Four out of 35 patients (11.4%) remained with neurologic sequelae, and 4/35 (11.4%) died. CONCLUSIONS: The presence of any of the signs or symptoms mentioned above should alert for the possibility of an intracranial subdural hematoma as a complication of puncture of the dura mater, especially in those patients with PDPH for more than one week, at which time investigation by neuroimaging is necessary.

Keywords : ANESTHETIC TECHNIQUES, Regional [spinal anesthesia]; COMPLICATIONS [post-dural puncture headache]; subdural hematoma.

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