Management of Nosebleeds

How to manage nose bleeds after nasal surgery

Home PagePost Op InstructionsManagement of Nosebleeds

While bleeding from the nose is an alarming event, it rarely signifies a serious underlying condition, nor is it usually a threat to life. The average adult has within him roughly ten pints (five quarts) of blood. The amount lost during any single nosebleed, while it may seem like a great deal, rarely exceeds several fluid ounces.

We recommend the following steps to stop a nosebleed. They are effective in over 90% of cases:

  1. Sit up; do not lie down.
  2. Blow the nose, specifically the side from which the bleeding comes. This may temporarily increase blood flow but you want to dispose of clots within the nasal passage.
  3. Obtain a piece of cotton – roughly one inch long, by one-half inch wide. Roll it into a compact cylinder. Saturate this piece of cotton with any kind of nasal spray or drop, e.g.: Dristan, Neosynephrine, Afrin, Otrivin. If you do not have any of these, use hydrogen peroxide.
  4. Then place the moist cotton far into the bleeding side of the nose until the end is just visible at the nostril.
  5. Pinch the LOWER ONE-HALF of the nose between thumb and index finger. These fingers should compress as much of the soft cartilaginous lower half of the nose as possible, not just the “tip” of the nose.
  6. Keep pinching for TEN MINUTES by the clock! You breathe through your mouth. By now the bleeding has stopped and you should be somewhat more relaxed.
  7. After the prescribed time, remove the cotton. If still bleeding, repeat steps 1 through 6. Thereafter, if still bleeding, contact me. If I cannot be reached, and all measures are failing, report to the nearest emergency room.

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