Intracranial hemorrhage is an important cause of brain injury in the neonatal population and bedside percutaneous needle aspiration has emerged as an alternative due to the major risks that can be caused by standard neurosurgical decompression. We aimed to assess the effectiveness of this minimally invasive bedside technique and conducted a retrospective analysis of all newborn infants with a large extra-axial hemorrhage associated with a parenchymal hemorrhage causing a midline shift, managed at three academic centers over a 15-year period. Collected data included clinical history, laboratory results, review of all imaging studies performed, and neurodevelopmental follow-up. Eight infants (3 preterm and 5 full-term) presented on day 1 to 2 with seizures ( n = 6) and apneas ( n = 5), signs of increased intracranial pressure ( n = 4), and coning ( n = 1). Risk factors were present in six. Cranial ultrasound and computed tomography showed a midline shift in all; two infants showed status epilepticus on amplitude-integrated electroencephalography with complete resolution after the procedure. Between 7 and 34 mL could be aspirated associated with a decrease in the midline shift as seen by ultrasonography performed during the puncture. No complications were seen related to the procedure and none of the infants required further acute neurosurgical intervention. On follow-up, three had mild sequelae, including motor coordination problems ( n = 1) and hemianopia ( n = 2); none developed cerebral palsy or postneonatal epilepsy. Neonates, presenting with severe symptoms, can be managed successfully using ultrasound-guided needle aspiration and this minimally invasive bedside method should be kept in mind before performing neurosurgical decompression.

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Cizmeci, M.N. (Mehmet N.), Thewissen, V., Zecic, A., Woerdeman, P.A. (Peter A.), Boer, B.D. (Bart De), Baert, E. (Edward), … de Vries, L. (2018). Bedside Ultrasound-Guided Percutaneous Needle Aspiration of Intra- and Extra-Axial Intracranial Hemorrhage in Neonates. Neuropediatrics, 49(4), 238–245. doi:10.1055/s-0038-1641568