Lumbar Puncture Associated with Pneumocephalus: Report of a Case

Grzegorz P. Kozikowski, Steven P. Cohen

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Pneumocephalus is a well known complication of spiral and epidural anesthesia, but it is extremely rare after diagnostic or therapeutic lumbar puncture. This uncommonness can obscure the clinical diagnosis and lead to unnecessary procedures and prolonged patient discomfort. We report a 72-yr-old woman with normal pressure hydrocephalus who underwent an unremarkable lumbar puncture that was complicated by a postprocedure pneumocephalus that manifested as a continuous headache. The pneumocephalus resolved spontaneously after 4 days. Possible mechanisms for this occurrence, along with steps that can be taken to prevent this complication, are discussed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)524-526
Number of pages3
JournalAnesthesia and analgesia
Issue number2
StatePublished - Feb 2004
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Anesthesiology and Pain Medicine


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