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Subconjunctival Hemorrhage (Bleeding in Eye)

When to Seek Medical Care

Call your health care provider or eye care provider (optometrist or ophthalmologist) if the subconjunctival hemorrhage does not get better within two weeks or if you have had multiple subconjunctival hemorrhages.

If you have a hemorrhage in both eyes at the same time or if the subconjunctival hemorrhage coincides with other symptoms of bleeding, including easy bruising, bleeding gums, or both, contact your health care provider or eye care provider.

Go to your health care provider, eye care provider, or emergency department immediately if you have a subconjunctival hemorrhage and you have any of the following:

Questions to Ask the Doctor

  • Is there any sign of damage to the eye?
  • Will I develop any scarring or permanent vision loss from this subconjunctival hemorrhage?
  • What causes a subconjunctival hemorrhage?
  • How can I prevent a subconjunctival hemorrhage?

Exams and Tests

Your health care provider or eye care provider will take a concise history of the events prior to the subconjunctival hemorrhage and perform an examination. Your blood pressure may also be checked. If you’ve been evaluated by your primary health care provider initially, you may be referred to an eye care specialist.

If trauma was the cause, a more thorough examination using a slit lamp (a special microscope for examining the eye) will usually be performed.

Subconjunctival Hemorrhage Treatment

Self-Care at Home

Usually, no treatment is needed. Over-the-counter artificial tears can be applied to the eye if mild irritation is present.

Unless otherwise directed by your health care provider, you should avoid the use of aspirin, ibuprofen, naproxyn, or other nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory medications as these can increased bleeding.

Medical Treatment

Usually, no treatment is required. Your health care provider or eye care provider may prescribe artificial tears to ease any irritation that may be present.

If the injury is related to trauma, your health care provider or eye care provider may need to examine your eye to rule out the possibility of damage to other parts of the eye.

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