OBJECTIVES: To test whether administration of the antifibrinolytic drug tranexamic acid (TXA) in patients with spontaneous intracerebral haemorrhage (SICH) leads to increased prevalence of diffusion-weighted MRI-defined hyperintense ischaemic lesions (primary hypothesis) or reduced perihaematomal oedema volume, perihaematomal diffusion restriction and residual MRI-defined SICH-related tissue damage (secondary hypotheses).DESIGN: MRI substudy nested within the double-blind randomised controlled Tranexamic Acid for Hyperacute Primary Intracerebral Haemorrhage (TICH)-2 trial (ISRCTN93732214).SETTING: International multicentre hospital-based study.PARTICIPANTS: Eligible adults consented and randomised in the TICH-2 trial who were also able to undergo MRI scanning. To address the primary hypothesis, a sample size of n=280?will allow detection of a 10% relative increase in prevalence of diffusion-weighted imaging (DWI) hyperintense lesions in the TXA group with 5% significance, 80% power and 5% imaging data rejection.INTERVENTIONS: TICH-2 MRI substudy participants will undergo MRI scanning using a standardised protocol at day ~5?and day ~90 after randomisation. Clinical assessments, randomisation to TXA or placebo and participant follow-up will be performed as per the TICH-2 trial protocol.CONCLUSION: The TICH-2 MRI substudy will test whether TXA increases the incidence of new DWI-defined ischaemic lesions or reduces perihaematomal oedema or final ICH lesion volume in the context of SICH.ETHICS AND DISSEMINATION: The TICH-2 trial obtained ethical approval from East Midlands - Nottingham 2 Research Ethics Committee (12/EM/0369) and an amendment to allow the TICH-2 MRI sub study was approved in April 2015 (amendment number SA02/15). All findings will be published in peer-reviewed journals. The primary outcome results will also be presented at a relevant scientific meeting.TRIAL REGISTRATION NUMBER: ISRCTN93732214; Pre-results.