What is Infant Hematoma?
A hematoma in an infant is a devastating birth injury that can happen with trauma, as sometimes seen in vacuum- or forceps-assisted deliveries.
Hematomas in infants are relatively rare. The main reported risk factor for a hematoma in infants is use of vacuum extractors or forceps. Other risk factors can include prolonged labor and premature birth.
In a hematoma, blood pools outside of the blood vessels in the head. A hematoma puts pressure on the brain tissue and can lead to death or lifelong disability if not immediately diagnosed and treated. A hematoma generally requires surgery to drain the blood.
Signs and symptoms of a hematoma include:
- Bulging fontanelles (soft spot)
- Feeding difficulties
- High pitched cry
- Increased head circumference
- Persistent vomiting