Hematoma: Symptoms & Signs

Medically Reviewed on 11/18/2020

A hematoma is a localized swelling anywhere within the soft tissue spaces of the body that is filled with blood. The blood is usually clotted or partially clotted.

Depending on the location and size, a hematoma may or may not cause symptoms and signs. In some cases, a visible swelling is noticeable, or an area of skin redness, pain or tenderness, and warmth may be present. A hematoma present within the skull can exert pressure on the brain, leading to neurologic symptoms that can be life-threatening.

Causes of a hematoma

A break in the wall of a blood vessel causes a hematoma. The vessel wall breakage may occur spontaneously, such as the case of an aneurysm, or it may be caused by trauma.

Other hematoma symptoms and signs


Emotional trauma is best described as a psychological response to a deeply distressing or life-threatening experience. See Answer

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Jameson, J. Larry, et al. Harrison's Principles of Internal Medicine, 20th Ed. New York: McGraw-Hill Education, 2018.