Epidural or Extradural Hematoma: Causes, Signs- Dizziness, Pupil Dilation, Treatment

What is Epidural Hematoma?

Epidural or Extradural hematoma is a serious medical condition in which there is collection of blood between the dura mater and the skull. This condition is generally caused by a traumatic head injury. Since the spine is also covered by the dura mater, epidural bleeds may also take place in the spinal column. This is a serious condition since the collection of blood increases pressure on the intracranial space and compresses the brain tissue causing a brain shift. Epidural hematoma occurs in approximately 1 to 3% of head injuries. This condition can be fatal if not treated immediately.

 Epidural or Extradural Hematoma

Causes of Epidural or Extradural Hematoma

Epidural hematoma is a very rare condition. The most common cause of this condition is a forceful impact injuring the head, for example in contact sports with the ball hitting the head or a collision between players. Such condition can also occur when being involved in road accidents or falling on the head.

Signs of Epidural or Extradural Hematoma

  • Relentless headache.
  • Momentary loss of consciousness.
  • Presence of dizziness and vomiting.
  • The pupil on the affected side gets dilated.
  • Weakness of limbs and muscles on the side opposite to the side of the injury.

Treatment of Epidural or Extradural Hematoma

  • Immediate medical attention is imperative after the injury.
  • Head imaging with an MRI or a CT is done for confirmatory diagnosis and to identify the degree of the bleed.
  • A surgical procedure generally becomes necessary for drainage of blood and prevents bleeding.
  • Post surgery, the patient needs to be put under close observation to look for any signs of persistent bleeding or build up of pressure in head.