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Home :: Head Injury, Subdural Hemorrhage And Hematoma

Head Injury, Subdural Hemorrhage And Hematoma

Bleeding (hemorrhage) that causes blood to collect and clot (hematoma) beneath the membranes (meninges) that cover the brain. There are 2 types of subdural hematomas:

  • An acute subdural hematoma occurs soon after a severe head injury. It is the most frequent cause of death from injury in contact sports.
  • A chronic subdural hematoma may develop weeks after a head injury. The injury may have been so minor that the patient does not remember it.


  • Brain.
  • Meninges.
  • Blood vessels to the brain.
  • Skull.


  • Acute: Severe blow to the head that bruises and tears the brain and its blood vessels.
  • Chronic: Minor (even forgotten) head injury. Blood in the enclosed space in the brain forms a hematoma that gradually increases with further bleeding.

Signs & Symptoms

  • Recurrent, worsening headaches.
  • Fluctuating drowsiness, dizziness, mental changes or confusion.
  • Weakness or numbness on one side of the body.
  • Vision disturbances.
  • Vomiting without nausea.
  • Pupils of different size (sometimes).


Follow your doctor's instructions. Instructions are supplemental.

Surgery is the only treatment for a subdural hemorrhage and , hematoma. Under local or light general anesthesia, small holes are bored through the skull. The blood clot (which looks like currant jelly) is removed manually or by suction. After surgery, symptoms usually improve rapidly.


Your doctor may prescribe:

  • Corticosteroid drugs to reduce swelling inside the skull.
  • Anticonvulsant medication.
  • Antibiotics to fight infection.

Home Diet

During recovery, eat a well-balanced diet that includes extra protein, such as meat, fish, poultry, cheese, milk and eggs. Increase fiber and fluid intake to prevent constipation that may result from decreased activity.

Prevention Tips
Wear a protective helmet for any activity at risk for a head injury.
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