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Intracranial hypertension in severe head injuries

Intracranial hypertension in severe head injuries

Acta Neurochirurgica 52(3-4): 249-263

Long-term ICP monitoring was carried out in a series of 124 patients with severe head injuries admitted to the Intensive Care Unit. Forty-nine percent of patients were admitted within six hours of injury. Most of them were referred by Community Hospitals. Only patients with diffuse brain lesions or patients operated on for mass lesions and remaining in a coma state after operation are taken into account. Altogether, 46 patients survived, but 15 of them remained severely disabled or in a vegetative state, and 78 died. Twenty-four percent of the whole series succumbed to fulminationg intracranial hypertension. The average survival in this group was 5.1 days. Twenty-nine percent died after exhibiting different levels of intracranial hypertension ranging from 20 to 50 mm Hg. In this group the role of extracerebral complications as a cause of death should not be underestimated. Death caused by cerebral lesions with ICP not exceeding 15 mm Hg was exceedingly rare in the first 72 hours. Normal or fairly raised ICP does not rule out the risk of devastating intracranial hypertension: reliable and harmless P/V tests are needed. All patients who survived after showing sustained intracranial hypertension exceeding 50 mm Hg were under 20 years of age. In the present series the results of treatment of intracranial hypertension were, on the whole, rather disappointing.

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Accession: 043450940

Download citation: RISBibTeXText

PMID: 7424606

DOI: 10.1007/bf01402080

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