AHEAD Study: an observational study of the management of anticoagulated patients who suffer head injury


Management of anticoagulated patients after head injury is unclear due to lack of robust evidence. This study aimed to determine the adverse outcome rate in these patients and identify risk factors associated with poor outcome.


Multicentre, observational study using routine patient records.


33 emergency departments in England and Scotland.


3566 adults (aged ≥16 years) who had suffered blunt head injury and were currently taking warfarin.

Main outcome measures

Primary outcome measure was rate of adverse outcome defined as death or neurosurgery following initial injury, clinically significant CT scan finding or reattendance with related complication within 10 weeks of initial hospital attendance. Secondary objectives included identifying risk factors for adverse outcome using univariable and multivariable analyses.

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