Research presented at the 2024 International Stroke Conference of the American Stroke Association indicates that injecting a substance to block an artery supplying the dura with blood, along with surgical removal of blood accumulations, reduces the risk of patients needing repeated operations compared to surgical drainage alone.
A subdural hematoma occurs when a thin blood vessel between the brain’s surface and protecting membranes tears and bleeds. This condition can result from physical trauma or develop over time after an injury. The study focused on the treatment of subacute or chronic subdural hematomas, both of which require surgical intervention.
Chronic subdural hematoma is a common neurosurgical condition and is expected to increase in the future, particularly in an aging population. These hematomas often occur in older individuals due to brain shrinkage that strains the veins connecting the dura and the brain, leading to an increased risk of tearing and bleeding.
– Jason Davies, MD, Ph.D., co-author of the study and associate professor in Neurosurgery and Biomedical Informatics at the State University of New York, Buffalo
Treating subacute or chronic subdural hematomas may involve surgical drainage or careful symptom monitoring to determine if the intervention is necessary. The challenge is that up to 20% of these cases require further surgery even after an initial operation.
The EMBOLISE study aimed to reduce the need for additional operations in patients with subacute or chronic subdural hematomas by employing a substance that blocks or embolizes an artery supplying the dura with blood. The study involved 400 adults across 39 centers and concluded that patients undergoing operation and embolization had significantly reduced instances of re-accumulated blood requiring further surgery within 90 days.
While the method proved effective in reducing the need for re-operation, it also showed a low overall incidence of adverse events, indicating its potential benefits for the patients. The research sheds light on the potential of this treatment approach, emphasizing the importance of ongoing studies in the field.
American Heart Association