Is systematic post-operative CT scan indicated after chronic subdural hematoma surgery?

Is systematic post-operative CT scan indicated after chronic subdural hematoma surgery?

Acta Neurochir (2016) 158:1241–1246

The aim of the present study was to evaluate the interest of systematic post-operative CTscan after unilateral chronic subdural hematoma (CSDH) evacuation. To achieve this goal, we chose to evaluate the ability of postoperative CT scan to predict the most frequent complication of CSDH: hematoma recurrence.

Methods We performed a retrospective case–control study. Cases were defined as patients who had CSDH recurrence; controls were those who did not.We first studied clinical data and pre-operative CT scan data. We then studied postoperative CT scan data: hematoma thickness and its decrease, persistence of midline shift, its value and its decrease, and presence of compressive pneumocephalus.

Results Among 654 patients, 15 were defined as cases, and were matched with 30 non-recurrent patients defined as controls. Regarding systematic post-operative CT scan findings, unilateral CSDH recurrence was clearly associated with the persistence of midline shift induced by the presence of compressive pneumocephalus.

Conclusions Systematic post-operative CT scan after unilateral CSDH evacuation could predict hematoma recurrence. We therefore considered it as recommended, to adapt the clinical and radiological follow-up of CSDH patients.

Preoperative predictive factors for surgical and functional outcomes in chronic subdural hematoma

Subdural Hematoma

Acta Neurochir (2016) 158:135–139

Chronic subdural hematoma (CSDH) is a frequently encountered neurosurgical condition, especially in the elderly. We investigated predictive factors for surgical and functional outcomes after burr-hole drainage (BHD) surgery.

Methods All patients with CSDH treated by BHD between January 2012 and December 2014 were included in this study. All patients were classified by symptom, clinical grade, time, location, hematoma density, midline shift, and other characteristics. Pre- and postoperative CT evaluation was performed at 0, 3, and 6 months. Clinical grades were classified as described in Markwalder et al. Surgical and clinical outcomes were evaluated with the brain expansion rate and modified Rankin Scale (mRS). Brain expansion rate was calculated as the ratio between post- and pre-operative hematoma thickness. Recurrence was defined as the occurrence of symptoms and hematoma on CT within 6 months.

Results This study included 130 patients over 2 years. Among the variable parameters, young age (<75), iso-density of hematoma on CT, and short duration from symptom to surgery were correlated with good brain expansion. Patients with good brain expansion had fewer recurrences. In terms of mRS, young age, iso-density, and good clinical grade were correlated with good functional outcomes.

Conclusions Clinicians should be more aware of general conditions and medical problems, especially in elderly patients. Membranectomy should be considered in patients with a long duration of symptoms or hypo-dense hematomas to promote good brain expansion and good mRS scores.

Bur hole craniostomy for chronic subdural hematoma

Bur hole craniostomy for chronic subdural hematoma

J Neurosurg 123:65–74, 2015

There is inconsistency among the perioperative management strategies currently used for chronic subdural hematoma (cSDH). Moreover, postoperative complications such as acute intracranial bleeding and cSDH recurrence affect clinical outcome of cSDH surgery. This study evaluated the risk factors associated with acute intracranial bleeding and cSDH recurrence and identified an effective perioperative strategy for cSDH patients.

Methods A retrospective study of patients who underwent bur hole craniostomy for cSDH between 2008 and 2012 was performed.

Results A consecutive series of 303 cSDH patients (234 males and 69 females; mean age 67.17 years) was analyzed. Postoperative acute intracranial bleeding developed in 14 patients (4.57%) within a mean of 3.07 days and recurrence was observed in 37 patients (12.21%) within a mean of 31.69 days (range 10–104 days) after initial bur hole craniostomy. The comorbidities of hematological disease and prior shunt surgery were clinical factors associated with acute bleeding. There was a significant risk of recurrence in patients with diabetes mellitus, but recurrence did not affect the final neurological outcome (p = 0.776). Surgical details, including the number of operative bur holes, saline irrigation of the hematoma cavity, use of a drain, and type of postoperative ambulation, were not significantly associated with outcome. However, a large amount of drainage was associated with postoperative acute bleeding.

Conclusions Bur hole craniostomy is an effective surgical procedure for initial and recurrent cSDH. Patients with hematological disease or a history of prior shunt surgery are at risk for postoperative acute bleeding; therefore, these patients should be carefully monitored to avoid overdrainage. Surgeons should consider informing patients with diabetes mellitus that this comorbidity is associated with an increased likelihood of recurrence.

Spinal CSF leakage and chronic subdural hematoma

Spinal cerebrospinal fluid leak as the cause of chronic subdural hematomas in nongeriatric patients

J Neurosurg 121:1380–1387, 2014

The etiology of chronic subdural hematoma (CSDH) in nongeriatric patients (≤ 60 years old) often remains unclear. The primary objective of this study was to identify spinal CSF leaks in young patients, after formulating the hypothesis that spinal CSF leaks are causally related to CSDH.

Methods. All consecutive patients 60 years of age or younger who underwent operations for CSDH between September 2009 and April 2011 at Bern University Hospital were included in this prospective cohort study. The patient workup included an extended search for a spinal CSF leak using a systematic algorithm: MRI of the spinal axis with or without intrathecal contrast application, myelography/fluoroscopy, and postmyelography CT. Spinal pathologies were classified according to direct proof of CSF outflow from the intrathecal to the extrathecal space, presence of extrathecal fluid accumulation, presence of spinal meningeal cysts, or no pathological findings. The primary outcome was proof of a CSF leak.

Results. Twenty-seven patients, with a mean age of 49.6 ± 9.2 years, underwent operations for CSDH. Hematomas were unilateral in 20 patients and bilateral in 7 patients. In 7 (25.9%) of 27 patients, spinal CSF leakage was proven, in 9 patients (33.3%) spinal meningeal cysts in the cervicothoracic region were found, and 3 patients (11.1%) had spinal cysts in the sacral region. The remaining 8 patients (29.6%) showed no pathological findings.

Conclusions. The direct proof of spinal CSF leakage in 25.9% of patients suggests that spinal CSF leaks may be a frequent cause of nongeriatric CSDH.

Nonsurgical treatment of chronic subdural hematoma with tranexamic acid


J Neurosurg 119:332–337, 2013

Chronic subdural hematoma (CSDH) is a common condition after head trauma. It can often be successfully treated surgically by inserting a bur hole and draining the liquefied hematoma. However, to the best of the authors’ knowledge, for nonemergency cases not requiring surgery, no reports have indicated the best approach for preventing hematoma enlargement or resolving it completely. The authors hypothesized that hyperfibrinolysis plays a major role in liquefaction of the hematoma. Therefore, they evaluated the ability of an antifibrinolytic drug, tranexamic acid, to completely resolve CSDH compared with bur hole surgery alone.

From 2007 to 2011, a total of 21 patients with CSDH seen consecutively at Kuki General Hospital, Japan, were given 750 mg of tranexamic acid orally every day. Patients were identified by a retrospective records review, which collected data on the volume of the hematoma (based on radiographic measurements) and any complications. Follow-up for each patient consisted of CT or MRI every 21 days from diagnosis to resolution of the CSDH.

Of the 21 patients, 3 with early stages of CSDH were treated by bur hole surgery before receiving medical therapy. The median duration of clinical and radiographic follow-up was 58 days (range 28–137 days). Before tranexamic acid therapy was initiated, the median hematoma volume for the 21 patients was 58.5 ml (range 7.5–223.2 ml); for the 18 patients who had not undergone surgery, the median hematoma volume was 55.6 ml (range 7.5–140.5 ml). After therapy, the median volume for all 21 patients was 3.7 ml (range 0–22.1 ml). No hematomas recurred or progressed.

Chronic subdural hematoma can be treated with tranexamic acid without concomitant surgery. Tranexamic acid might simultaneously inhibit the fibrinolytic and inflammatory (kinin-kallikrein) systems, which might consequently resolve CSDH. This medical therapy could prevent the early stages of CSDH that can occur after head trauma and the recurrence of CSDH after surgery.

Independent predictors for recurrence of chronic subdural hematoma

Acta Neurochir (2012) 154:1541–1548 DOI 10.1007/s00701-012-1399-9

Chronic subdural hematoma is characterized by blood in the subdural space that evokes an inflammatory reaction. Numerous factors potentially associated with recurrence of chronic subdural hematoma have been reported, but these factors have not been sufficiently investigated. In this study, we evaluated the independent risk factors of recurrence.

Methods We analyzed data for 420 patients with chronic subdural hematoma treated by the standard surgical procedure for hematoma evacuation at our institution.

Results Ninety-two (21.9 %) patients experienced at least one recurrence of chronic subdural hematoma during the study period. We did not identify any significant differences between chronic subdural hematoma recurrence and current antiplatelet therapy. The recurrence rate was 7 % for the homogeneous type, 21 % for the laminar type, 38 % for the separated type, and 0 % for the trabecular type. The rate of recurrence was significantly lower in the homogeneous and trabecular type than in the laminar and separated type. We performed a multivariate logistic regression analysis and found that postoperative midline shifting (OR, 3.6; 95 % CI, 1.618-7.885; p00.001), diabetes mellitus (OR, 2.2; 95 % CI, 1.196-3.856; p=0.010), history of seizure (OR, 2.6; 95 % CI, 1.210-5.430; p=0.014), width of hematoma (OR, 2.1; 95 % CI, 1.287-3.538; p=0.003), and anticoagulant therapy (OR, 2.7; 95 % CI, 1.424-6.960; p=0.005) were independent risk factors for the recurrence of chronic subdural hematoma.

Conclusions We have shown that postoperative midline shifting (≥5 mm), diabetes mellitus, preoperative seizure, preoperative width of hematoma (≥20 mm), and anticoagulant therapy were independent predictors of the recurrence of chronic subdural hematoma. According to internal architecture of hematoma, the rate of recurrence was significantly lower in the homogeneous and the trabecular type than the laminar and separated type.

Chronic subdural hematoma in the elderly: not a benign disease

J Neurosurg 114:72–76, 2011. (DOI: 10.3171/2010.8.JNS10298)

Chronic subdural hematoma (CSDH) is perceived to be a “benign,” easily treated condition in the elderly, but reported follow-up periods are brief, usually limited to acute hospitalization.

Methods. The authors conducted a retrospective review of data obtained in a prospectively identified consecutive series of adult patients admitted to their institution between September 2000 and February 2008 and in whom there was a CT diagnosis of CSDH. Survival data were compared to life-table data.

Results. Of the 209 cases analyzed, 63% were men and the mean age was 80.6 years (range 65–96 years). Primary surgical interventions performed were bur holes in 21 patients, twist-drill closed-system drainage in 44, and craniotomies in 72. An additional 72 patients were simply observed. Reoperations were recorded in 5 patients—4 who had previously undergone twist-drill drainage and 1 who had previously undergone a bur hole procedure (p = 0.41, chi-square analysis). Thirty-five patients (16.7%) died in hospital, 130 were discharged to rehabilitation or a skilled care facility, and 44 returned home. The follow-up period extended to a maximum of 8.3 years (median 1.45 years). Six-month and 1-year mortality rates were 26.3% and 32%, respectively. In the multivariate analysis (step-wise logistic regression), the sole factor that predicted in-hospital death was neurological status on admission (OR 2.1, p = 0.02, for each step). Following discharge, the median survival in the remaining cohort was 4.4 years. In the Cox proportional hazards model, only age (hazard ratio [HR] 1.06/year, p = 0.02) and discharge to home (HR 0.24, p = 0.01) were related to survival, whereas the type of intervention, whether surgery was performed, size of subdural hematoma, amount of shift, bilateral subdural hematomas, and anticoagulant agent use did not affect the long- or short-term mortality rate. Comparison of postdischarge survival and anticipated actuarial survival demonstrated a markedly increased mortality rate in the CSDH group (median survival 4.4 vs 6 years, respectively; HR 1.94, p = 0.0002, log-rank test). This excess mortality rate was also observed at 6 months postdischarge with evidence of normalization only at 1 year.

Conclusions. In this first report of the long-term outcome of elderly patients with CSDH the authors observed persistent excess mortality up to 1 year beyond diagnosis. This belies the notion that CSDH is a benign disease and indicates it is a marker of other underlying chronic diseases similar to hip fracture

Choosing the best operation for chronic subdural hematoma: a decision analysis

J Neurosurg 113:615–621, 2010.DOI: 10.3171/2009.9.JNS08825

Chronic subdural hematoma (CSDH), a condition much more common in the elderly, presents an increasing challenge as the population ages. Treatment strategies for CSDH include bur-hole craniostomy (BHC), twist-drill craniostomy (TDC), and craniotomy. Decision analysis was used to organize existing data and develop recommendations for effective treatment.

Methods. A Medline search was used to identify articles about treatment of CSDH. Direct assessment by health care professionals of the relative health impact of common complications and recurrences was used to generate utility values for treatment outcomes. Monte Carlo simulation and sensitivity analyses allowed comparisons across treatment strategies. A second simulation examined whether intraoperative irrigation or postoperative drainage affect the outcomes following BHC.

Results. On a scale from 0 to 1, the utility of BHC was found to be 0.9608, compared with 0.9202 for TDC (p = 0.001) and 0.9169 for craniotomy (p = 0.006). Sensitivity analysis confirmed the robustness of these values. Craniotomy yielded fewer recurrences, but more frequent and more serious complications than did BHC. There were no significant differences for BHC with or without irrigation or postoperative drainage.

Conclusions. Bur-hole craniostomy is the most efficient choice for surgical drainage of uncomplicated CSDH. Bur-hole craniostomy balances a low recurrence rate with a low incidence of highly morbid complications. Decision analysis provides statistical and empirical guidance in the absence of well-controlled large trials and despite a confusing range of previously reported morbidity and recurrence.