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How is a hematoma diagnosed?

Hematomas of the skin and soft tissues, such as muscle and joints, are often diagnosed by physical examination alone.

For patients exhibiting signs of internal bleeding, the health care practitioner will decide what imaging modality is best to evaluate the situation. Plain X-rays may be needed to assess for bone fracture. Patients with significant head injury often require CT scanning. Ultrasound is the testing modality of choice for pregnant patients.

Return to Hematoma

See what others are saying

Comment from: calves41, 75 or over Female (Caregiver) Published: May 21

My husband fell and bumped the back of his head on a door jamb. Even though he was treated and checked for a concussion, nothing showed up. Four weeks later he had a seizure and was confused and unable to talk. Tests showed he had a subdural hematoma and was hospitalized. He was given platelets to stop the bleeding and remained in the hospital for several days. We are in a wait and see period now and are scheduled for a repeat CT scan and follow up appointment with the neurosurgeon. Wish us luck.

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Comment from: kansasgal17, 35-44 Female (Patient) Published: February 27

I was hit by softball while pitching. I thought initially I broke my thigh bone as I had instant trembling, swelling and dimpling. The day after it was so hot, lumpy and painful I was scared of a possible blood clot but the doctor said although it was the biggest hematoma he's ever seen, there's no risk for blood clot unless hit on the inside of the thigh. No x-rays were taken and no treatments suggested. He said it would go away on its own. This picture is on day 3. On day 8 the bruising started to run all the way down my calf. Two years later I still have a huge bulls-eye of spider veins where I was hit.

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Comment from: Snowdrops, 65-74 Female (Patient) Published: June 13

The hematoma on my hand looks just like the one pictured here. It was caused by a particularly vicious rose thorn when gardening. It swelled up rapidly to the size of a small pigeon's egg. Treated with ice this began to subside after 20 minutes. Four days later the entire back of the hand is purple but not painful.

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