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The Hunger Project Bolen Report
Ohm Society
Bloody Nose (Epistaxis) (Nosebleed) Print E-mail

Dr. Kennedy The nose is rich in blood vessels and situated in a vulnerable position on the face. As a result, any trauma to the face can cause bleeding which may be profuse. Bloody nose (epistaxis) can occur spontaneously when the nasal membranes dries out, crusts, and cracks, as is common in dry climates, or during the winter months when the air is dry and warm from household heaters. People are more susceptible if they are taking medications which prevent normal blood clotting (Coumadin, heparin, warfarin, aspirin, or any anti-inflammatory medication). Other predisposing factors include infection, trauma, allergic and non-allergic rhinitis, hypertension, alcohol abuse, and inherited bleeding problems. Bloody nose can be caused my nervous picking at the nose and this is called epistaxis digitorum.

To stop a nosebleed, doctors commonly recommend the following:

  • Pinch all the soft parts of the nose together between your thumb and index finger.
  • Press firmly toward the face - compressing the pinched parts of the nose against the bones of the face.
  • Hold the nose for at least 5 minutes (timed by the clock). Repeat as necessary until the nose has stopped bleeding.
  • Sit quietly, keeping the head higher than the level of the heart; that is, sit up or lie with the head elevated. Do not lay flat or put your head between your legs.
  • Apply ice (crushed in a plastic bag or washcloth) to nose and cheeks.
  • If the above does not work, go to an emergency room.

Styptic powder is used by veterinarians to stop the bleeding in animals. It is available under the name Kwik Stop. It should be used only for rare instances of bleeding as it contains aluminum. Frequent dosing could cause aluminum poisoning. It is best applied with a Q-tip. It is for veterinary use only.

The information in this article is not meant to be medical advice.�Treatment for a medical condition should come at the recommendation of your personal physician.

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