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October 1964

Massive Hemorrhage—Scalps of Newborn Infants

Am J Dis Child. 1964;108(4):413-417. doi:10.1001/archpedi.1964.02090010415012

Swelling and bleeding into the scalp of newborn infants is an unavoidable accompaniment of the birth process. The two most common types of scalp swelling are caput succedaneum and cephalhematoma. The former is a serosanguineous infiltration of connective tissue situated on the presenting part of the fetus. The latter represents a collection of blood between the pericranium and skull and has been described as a "banal unexciting bulge on the skull of the newborn to which the examiner pays but scant attention".1 X-rays of the skull2 in the latter group may reveal a linear or depressed fracture and, occasionally, symptoms of a subdural hematoma may develop. Nevertheless, since these findings may appear in the absence of fractures, the role which these bone lesions may play in the development of intracranial bleeding is not clear. Further hematologic studies of such patients are seldom recommended unless there is evidence of

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