Blood in the spinal tap - Aneurysm or hemorrhage?

Patient : My mom went to the hospital with chronic, painful headaches that she said felt like a burst, then fingers wrapping around her head. They gave her a spinal tap and found blood. They are trying to find where she was bleeding from. What is blood in a spinal tap indictive of and what should be done next.
Doctor :   Blood in the spinal tap may be result of a traumatic lumbar puncture or may be due to CNS bleeding such as subarachnoid hemorrhage, cerebral hemorrhage, rupture of an aneurysm or a bleeding from the spinal cord. Treatment and recovery depends on the location, cause, and amount of the hemorrhage as well as, on how early the treatment is received. Surgery may be done to repair or remove structures causing the bleed as in case of aneurysm. If the hematoma is large enough to cause pressure on the other parts of the brain, it may become necessary to surgically drain this hematoma rather than watchful waiting as is usually done in case of small hematomas. Medications used include steroids or diuretics to reduce the swelling or intracranial pressure, painkillers, anti convulsants etc.
 

Related Q&A

Q: Fell on tile on side of my head a couple of days ago and it is a little swollen and tender when i sleep on my side or...

Q: I have had a pain/headache over my eye on the brow bone for over a week. It's tender to touch that area and also over...

Q: I fell Saturday night and hit my head pretty hard. I have a little bump and have had a headache ever since. Not sure ...

Q: Some three years ago I suffered vertigo and what was maybe a panic or anxiety attack one night. I am 73. I thought ...

Q: I am a 23yo male. Over the past three years I have been getting a strange pain at my temples everyday, every 3 to 6 m...

 
DOCTOR ADVISORY BOARD
218

Dr. James Obaji M.D.

  • 247 Reviews
  • Family Physician
173

Dr. Suneel Sharman M.D.

  • 190 Reviews
  • Family Physician
138

Dr. Pat Golden M.D.

  • 169 Reviews
  • Cardiologist
98

Dr. Kunaal Jindal M.D.

  • 112 Reviews
  • Plastic Surgeon
CNN
BBC
MSNBC
CBS
abcNews
FoxNews