Intracerebral hemorrhage: natural history and rationale of ultra-early hemostatic therapy

Mayer, Stephan A.
October 2002
Intensive Care Medicine;Oct2002 Supplement 2, Vol. 28, pS235
Academic Journal
journal article
Stroke is a major health problem worldwide, causing high morbidity and mortality. Intracerebral hemorrhage (ICH) accounts for 15% of stroke cases in the US and Europe and up to 30% in Asian populations. It is less treatable than other forms of stroke and causes higher morbidity and disability. Data suggest that early hematomy growth is the principal cause of early neurological deterioration after ICH. Prospective and retrospective studies indicate that early hematoma growth occurs in 18-38% of patients scanned within 3 h of ICH onset, and that hematoma volume is an important predictor of 30-day mortality. As hematoma growth in acute ICH is a dynamic process, intervention with ultra-early hemostatic therapy could lead to minimization and even prevention of early hematomy growth. Recombinant activated factor VII (rFVIIa, 'NovoSeven'), a powerful initiator of hemostasis, is approved for the treatment of bleeding in patients with hemophilia and inhibitors and may also promote hemostasis in patients with normal coagulation. rFVa acts locally at the bleeding site without activating systemic coagulation and may be a valuable therapy during the hyperacute stage of ICH. A randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled, dose-ranging trial is currently in progress to investigate the potential of rFVIIa as an ultra-early hemostatic therapy to prevent or minimize hematoma growth in ICH patients without coagulopathy.


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