A case of late epidural hematoma in a patient on clopidogrel therapy postoperatively: when is it safe to resume antiplatelet agents? SPINE JOURNAL Carragee, E. J., Golish, S. R., Scuderi, G. J. 2011; 11 (1): E1-E4


The use of antiplatelet agents after coronary artery stent placement is currently recommended to prevent coronary stent obstruction. These patients may have concurrent disabling spinal stenosis and require spinal decompression. Resuming antiplatelet agents as soon as possible after spinal surgery is recommended.To describe a unique case of late postoperative epidural hematoma occurring with the use of clopidogrel.A case report and review of the literature.The hospital chart, history, physical examination, and imaging of a single patient were reviewed.A 59-year-old man underwent spinal decompression and fusion for neurogenic claudication with lumbar spinal stenosis and spondylolisthesis while managed on clopidogrel for prevention of thrombosis after cardiac stent placement. He developed a symptomatic epidural hematoma 12 days postoperatively, well outside the usual time frame for this complication. The patient was closely monitored, and lumbar radiculopathy resolved over the ensuing days.After spinal surgery and resumption of antiplatelet therapy, the physician needs to maintain vigilance in observing patients for late postoperative complications such as epidural hematoma, which could have catastrophic consequences if not recognized in a timely manner.

View details for DOI 10.1016/j.spinee.2010.10.013

View details for Web of Science ID 000285414600001

View details for PubMedID 21095164