Persistent Intracranial Hypertension Treated by Hypothermic Therapy After Severe Head Injury Might Induce Late-Phase Cerebral Vasospasm

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Abstract

Background:

Vasospasm caused by intracranial hypertension in head injury remains controversial.

Methods:

Between 1996 and 2004, we prospectively and consecutively performed conventional cerebral angiography for six patients with head injuries who showed persistent intracranial hypertension (over 20 mm Hg for longer than 5 days) despite performing various treatments for intracranial hypertension.

Results:

All subjects had a minor hemorrhage at admission, classified as Fisher group 2. Five of the six patients had angiographically confirmed vasospasm, and one of them later developed a cerebral infarction. Four of the five subjects who exhibited cerebral vasospasm had undergone hypothermic therapy to control the intracranial hypertension.

Conclusion:

Our results suggest that persistent intracranial hypertension that is treated by hypothermic therapy may be related to late phase cerebral vasospasm.

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