Foetal and neonatal intracranial haemorrhage in term newborn infants: Hacettepe University experience

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Abstract

In this study, we aimed to evaluate the incidence, risk factors, causes and clinical management of intracranial haemorrhage (ICH) diagnosed during foetal life or in the first month of life in term neonates with a discussion of the role of haematological risk factors. This study included term neonates (gestational age 37–42 weeks) with ICH diagnosed, treated and followed up in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit of Hacettepe University, Ankara, Turkey, between January 1994 and January 2014. Medical follow-up was obtained retrospectively from hospital files and prospectively from telephonic interviews and/or clinical visits. During the study period, 16 term neonates were identified as having ICH in our hospital. In six (37.5%) neonates, ICH was diagnosed during foetal life by obstetric ultrasonography, and in 10 (62.5%) neonates, it has been diagnosed after birth. Haemorrhage types included intraventricular haemorrhage (IVH) in eight (50.0%), intraparenchymal haemorrhage in six (37.5%), subarachnoid haemorrhage in one (6.2%) and subdural haemorrhage in one (6.2%) neonate. IVH was the most common (n = 5/6, 83.3%) haemorrhage type among neonates diagnosed during foetal life. Overall, haemorrhage severity was determined as mild in three (18.7%) neonates, moderate in three (18.75%) neonates and severe in 10 (62.5%) neonates. During follow-up, one infant was diagnosed as afibrinogenemia, one diagnosed as infantile spasm, one cystic fibrosis, one orofaciodigital syndrome and the other diagnosed as Friedrich ataxia. Detailed haematological investigation and search for other underlying diseases are very important to identify the reason of ICH in term neonates. Furthermore, early diagnosis, close monitoring and prompt surgical interventions are significant factors to reduce disabilities.

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