World Journal of Surgery

, Volume 30, Issue 11, pp 2050–2055 | Cite as

Rectus Sheath Hematoma: A Series of Unfortunate Events

  • Andreas Luhmann
  • Eiffon Vaughn Williams



Rectus sheath hematoma is rare. It can present to physicians in many specialties, but invariably the surgeon is contacted regarding management. It is frequently difficult to diagnose, which can result in delay of treatment or unnecessary surgery. Its incidence is on the rise.


We present a series of four cases of rectus sheath hematoma that presented to our hospital within a 5-month period. A comprehensive up-to-date review of the literature was undertaken.


Our research highlights the diagnostic dilemmas, the spectrum of severity (all three grades are represented), the complications, and the need for interdisciplinary awareness.


Rectus sheath hematoma is a rare but important entity in the differential diagnosis of abdominal pain. Interdisciplinary awareness of this condition is essential, as it is frequently difficult to diagnose, leading to delay in treatment or unneeded surgery. Grade 3 hematomas can lead to abdominal compartment syndrome and can be fatal.


International Normalize Ratio Abdominal Compartment Syndrome Rectus Sheath Iliac Fossa Posterior Rectus Sheath 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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Copyright information

© Société Internationale de Chirurgie 2006

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Royal Glamorgan HospitalYnys MaerdyUK
  2. 2.PenplasUK

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