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J Trauma. 1993 Feb;34(2):211-5.

Epidural hematomas in the posterior cranial fossa.

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Department of Surgery, Chang Gung Medical College & Chang Gung Memorial Hospital, Taipei, Taiwan, Republic of China.


A review of 89 cases of posterior fossa epidural hematoma (PFEDH) is presented. The mortality rate was 17.9%. In 44 cases (49.4%) there were associated intracranial hematomas. In 30 cases the hematoma was localized within the boundary of the foramen magnum and the transverse and sigmoid sinuses ("pure" PFEDH). In 59 cases the hematoma extended beyond the sinuses to the occipital area ("mixed" PFEDH). In the pure PFEDHs, the bleeder could be identified in only six cases and in five cases the source was a bleeding transverse sinus. The bleeders disclosed in the mixed PFEDHs were a torn transverse sinus in 28 cases, a meningeal artery in three cases, and a bony fracture in three cases. The possibility of a PFEDH should be kept in mind when evaluating patients who have suffered an occipital blow resulting in a frontal or temporal hematoma. In our series, patients with the pure PFEDHs with no associated intracranial hematomas had the best prognoses. Nine patients developed a PFEDH after surgery for a supratentorial hematoma. In 14 cases the PFEDH was treated at the subacute or chronic stage. All but one patient survived with a good recovery. Children generally had better prognoses.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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