Spinal Epidural Hematoma Needs Fast Treatment

The condition is a rare but serious risk for patients taking clopidogrel

THURSDAY, May 15 (HealthDay News) -- Spinal epidural hematoma is a rare and poorly understood condition that requires rapid diagnosis and treatment, according to an article published in the May/June issue of The Spine Journal. Accompanying case reports in the journal state that the condition is a potential risk for patients taking clopidogrel and has also been reported in a patient with severe kyphoscoliosis.

Akira Matsumura, M.D., and colleagues at the Yodogawa Christian Hospital in Osaka City, Japan, write that in a study of seven patients with spontaneous spinal epidural hematoma, symptoms of onset in all cases were severe neck and back pain. Management of the condition requires precise and timely diagnosis as well as rapid surgical treatment, they write.

Researchers in Hong Kong report on the case of a 53-year-old woman with long spinal fusion for severe kyphoscoliosis who developed a spinal epidural hematoma within the fused segment of the scoliotic curve, while researchers in France describe the case of a 79-year-old woman under treatment with clopidogrel who developed an epidural hematoma in the absence of any other risk factors.

"In any patient under clopidogrel therapy and with a typical clinical presentation, spontaneous spinal epidural hematoma should be suspected and quickly diagnosed, regardless of hemostatic status or the absence of other major risk factors," the authors of the French case report write.

Abstract - Matsumura
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Abstract - Wong
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Abstract - Cianco
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