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Hematoma (cont.)

Types of Hematomas

There are many different types of hematomas and they are described by the location of the hematoma. Examples include the following:

Intracranial Hematomas

Intracranial hematomas can be epidural (above the epidural membrane), subdural (below the epidural membrane), intracerebral (within the brain tissue), or subarachnoid (between the pial and arachnoid membranes in the brain). Although a few intracranial hematomas may remain small and not significantly compromised brain tissue, most intracranial hematomas are considered to be a medical emergency because they can compress brain tissue and blood vessels resulting in significant brain damage.

Symptoms of intracranial hemorrhage and/or hematoma depend upon where the brain is affected. General symptoms include altered consciousness, nausea and vomiting, headache, focal neurological deficits, neck stiffness, and some patients may have seizures and/or coma develop.

In most patients, intracranial hematoma that produces symptoms is considered to be a medical emergency and specialized medical professionals (neurosurgeons) are consulted urgently.

Picture of epidural, subdural, and intracerebral hematomas
Picture of an epidural, subdural, and intracerebral hematomas

Subungual Hematomas

An injury to the bed of a finger or toenail may cause a subungual hematoma. This type of hematomas typically causes significant pain because it is trapped in a small space that does not allow room for the bleeding to expand. The treatment may include burning a small hole through the nail itself to allow the blood to drain.

Picture of a subungual hematoma
Picture of a subungual hematoma
Medically Reviewed by a Doctor on 9/15/2015

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