Management of acute subdural hematoma in a patient with portopulmonary hypertension on prostanoid therapy

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Surg Neurol Int


BACKGROUND: Treprostinil is a prostacyclin analog used to treat portopulmonary hypertension (PPHTN) and is one of several drugs shown to increase survival, but results in platelet dysfunction. Little is known about the management of patients on treprostinil who present with an acute subdural hematoma (aSDH). We describe such a case and offer our recommendations on management based on our experience and review of the literature.

CASE DESCRIPTION: A 63-year-old, right-handed female with a history of PPHTN presented with severe headache and was found to have a large left aSDH with midline shift on imaging. She was admitted to the neurosurgical intensive care unit (ICU) where she developed hemiparesis and subsequently underwent emergent decompression. Postoperatively she improved, but several hours after became obtunded and imaging showed reaccumulation of the aSDH, which required reoperation. At 6 months postoperatively she had only a mild hemiparesis and was being reconsidered for treprostinil therapy as a bridge to liver transplant. Only one paper in the literature thus far has reported a patient with an aSDH managed with treprostinil. The authors achieved adequate intraoperative hemostasis without the use of platelet transfusion and lack of complications intraoperatively.

CONCLUSION: While concerns related to the risk of bleeding in surgery are valid, intraoperative hemostasis does not appear to be profoundly affected. Surgical intervention should not be delayed and prostanoid therapy discontinued, if possible, postoperatively. Patients should be placed in an intensive care setting with assistance from pulmonary specialists and close monitoring of neurological status and blood pressure.


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