A prospective series of 20 patients with moderate to severe intraventricular haemorrhage (IVH) was studied for the effect of intraventricular administration of recombinant tissue plasminogen activator (rt-PA) on reduction of haematoma volume and prognosis. On the day of haemorrhage ventriculostomy was performed and 2 to 5 mg of rt-PA were injected via the external ventricular drainage, followed by drainage closure for two hours. In 14 patients rt-PA treatment was repeated. Computed tomography showed complete clot lysis or substantial reduction of intraventricular haematoma volume in 19 patients within 96 hours; the clearance of the third and fourth ventricle preceded the clearance of the lateral ventricles. Decrease of ventricular enlargement was seen in all but one patient with initial ventricular dilatation. Increase of haematoma volume and ventricular size was found in one patient. Outcome was minor or no neurological deficit in nine patients, disabling neurological deficit in six patients, and vegetative status in four patients. One patient did not survive the IVH. Intraventricular treatment with rt-PA seems effective in rapid lysis of intraventricular haematoma and normalisation of impaired CSF circulation. This treatment may contribute to an improvement in prognosis of moderate to severe IVH.
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