Dilation of the cerebral ventricles is a common condition in preterm neonates with intraventricular hemorrhage (IVH). This post hemorrhagic ventricle dilation (PHVD) can lead to lifelong neurological impairment through ischemic injury due to increased intracranial pressure (ICP). Interventions, such as ventricular tapping to remove cerebrospinal fluid (CSF), are used to prevent injury, but determining the optimal time for treatment is difficult as clinical signs of increased ICP lack sensitivity. There is a growing interest in using near-infrared spectroscopy (NIRS) because of its ability to monitor cerebral oxygen saturation (StO2) at the bedside. However, the accuracy of NIRS may be affected by signal contamination from enlarged ventricles, especially if there are blood breakdown products (bbp) in CSF following IVH. To investigate this, serial NIR spectra from the head and from CSF samples were acquired over a month from seven IVH patients undergoing treatment for PHVD. Over time, the visual appearance of the CSF samples progressed from dark brown (“tea color”) to clear yellow, reflecting the reduction in bbp concentration as confirmed by the stronger absorption around 760 nm at the earlier time points. All CSF samples contained strong absorption at 960 nm due to water. More importantly the same trend in these absorption features was observed in the in vivo spectra, and Monte Carlo simulations confirmed the potential for signal contamination from enlarged ventricles. These findings highlight the challenges of accurately measuring StO2 in this patient population and the necessity of using a hyperspectral NIRS system to resolve the additional chromophores.