Eight patients with E. coli septicaemia had oliguric renal failure which was associated with haematological evidence of intravascular coagulation. Five of these patients also had the characteristic blood picture of microangiopathic haemolytic anaemia. In an attempt to prevent further deposition of fibrin, intravenous heparin was administered to six patients, three of whom recovered fully and three died. The diagnosis of intravascular coagulation was subsequently confirmed by histological examination of necropsy material and it is suggested that some of the complications of E.
Journal of Neurology, Neurosurgery, and Psychiatry
Three cases with intracranial lesions developed evidence of disseminated intravascular coagulation which was confirmed at necropsy. The factors engendering this state, including release of potent thromboplastin from neural tissue are discussed and the danger of this intermediary mechanism of disease increasing the mortality of intracranial disease is demonstrated. Careful haematological investigation of all patients with intracranial disease is therefore advised, especially if they manifest evidence of a bleeding tendency.