Spinal hematomas (blood bleed/clots in the spine) following a lumbar puncture are a rare but possible complication. This complication is most likely on some who is on anti-coagulation (coumadin) therapy or has a pre-existing coagulation abnormality. Normally, this complication is limited to the spine causing severe pain and potentially causing sudden paralysis. And requiring surgical decompression, so duration of the spinal problem depends on the treatment.
Can a clot be thrown to the brain from the spine? Hard to say for sure, other possbilities are more likely. Like this scenario: Person on coumadin for atrial fibrillation is taken off the anti-coagulant for the spinal procedure. Without the clot preventing effects of coumadin for a short period of time, clot begins to form in the heart and is thrown to the brain.
Clots are typically thrown from a leg vein, a carotid artery, and the heart. Because spinal hematomas are isolated from the major blood vessels and the circulatory system, it seems very unlikely that a blood clot in the spine could be thrown to the brain.
Dr. Christina Lasich, MD
We hope you find this general health information helpful. Please note however, that this Q&A is meant to support not replace the professional medical advice you receive from your doctor. No information in the Answers above is intended to diagnose or treat any condition. The views expressed in the Answers above belong to the individuals who posted them and do not necessarily reflect the views of Remedy Health Media. Remedy Health Media does not review or edit content posted by our community members, but reserves the right to remove any material it deems inappropriate.