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  • Writer's pictureDr. Karuturi Subrahmanyam

Understanding Subdural Hematoma: A Guide for Patients


Subdural hematoma is a serious medical condition that occurs when blood collects beneath the outer layer of the brain’s protective tissues, known as the dura mater. This condition often results from a head injury and can be life-threatening, making it crucial to understand its causes, symptoms, and treatment options.


What is Subdural Hematoma?

A subdural hematoma is a type of bleeding inside your head that happens when blood accumulates under the dura mater. It’s classified as a traumatic brain injury (TBI) and can develop from a tear in a blood vessel, leading to blood leaking into the space between the dura mater and the arachnoid mater.


Types of Subdural Hematomas

There are three types of subdural hematomas, categorized by how quickly they develop:

  • Acute: Symptoms are severe and appear immediately after a head injury.

  • Subacute: Symptoms usually appear hours to days or even weeks after the head injury.

  • Chronic: More common in older individuals, symptoms may not appear for weeks or months.


Symptoms to Watch For

The symptoms of a subdural hematoma can vary but may include:

  • Severe headaches

  • Slurred speech

  • Dizziness

  • Seizures

  • Changes in consciousness or alertness.


Causes and Risk Factors

Subdural hematomas are most often caused by head injuries, which can occur from falls, car accidents, or sports injuries. Certain factors can increase the risk of developing a subdural hematoma, such as old age, blood clotting disorders, alcohol abuse, and taking blood thinners.


Diagnosis and Treatment

Diagnosis typically involves imaging tests like CT scans. Treatment options can range from monitoring the condition to surgical intervention, depending on the severity and type of subdural hematoma.


Prognosis and Recovery

The outlook for patients with a subdural hematoma varies. Acute cases require immediate medical attention and can be life-threatening. Chronic cases may have a more gradual onset, and with proper treatment, many patients can recover well.


Summary

If you or someone you know experiences symptoms of a subdural hematoma, especially after a head injury, seek medical attention immediately. Early diagnosis and treatment are key to managing this condition and preventing serious complications.

Remember, this article is for informational purposes only and should not replace professional medical advice. If you have concerns or questions about subdural hematoma, consult with a doctor.


Dr. Karuturi Subrahmanyam, MD, FRCP (London), FACP (USA)

Internal Medicine Specialist


Kify Hospital

Danavaipeta

Rajahmundry

Phone : 85000 23456


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