Skip to content

First Aid & Emergencies

Nosebleeds

Font Size
A
A
A

When to Seek Medical Care for a Nosebleed

Call a doctor about nosebleeds:

  • If you have repeated episodes of nosebleeds
  • If you have additional bleeding from places other than the nose, such as in the urine or stool
  • If you bruise easily
  • If you are on any blood-thinning drugs, including aspirin or warfarin (Coumadin)
  • If you have any underlying disease that may affect blood clotting, such as liver disease, kidney disease, or hemophilia (inability of blood to clot)
  • If you recently had chemotherapy

Go to the hospital for nosebleeds if:

  • You are still bleeding after pinching the nose for 10 minutes.
  • You are having repeated episodes of nosebleeds over a short time.
  • You feel dizzy or light-headed or like you are going to pass out.
  • You have a rapid heartbeat or trouble breathing.
  • You are coughing up or vomiting blood.
  • You have a rash or temperature greater than than 101.4°F (38.5°C).
  • Your doctor instructs you to go to a hospital's emergency department.

Nosebleed Exams and Tests

  • To examine the nose, the doctor places medications into the nostrils, usually with a cotton ball, that numb the inside of the nose as well as constrict the blood vessels in that area. This will also reduce swelling and allow the doctor to see inside the nose better
  • The diagnosis of a posterior nosebleed is usually made when attempts to control the bleeding when the measures used for an anterior nosebleed have failed. Seeing the source of a posterior nosebleed is nearly impossible.
  • Lab tests may be done to evaluate blood loss or the effects of blood thinning drugs.

First Aid A-Z

  • There are no topics that begin with 'O'
  • There are no topics that begin with 'Q'
  • There are no topics that begin with 'U'
  • There are no topics that begin with 'X'
  • There are no topics that begin with 'Y'
  • There are no topics that begin with 'Z'

Today on WebMD

Antibiotic on hand
Slideshow
3d scan of fractured skull
Slideshow
 
Father putting ointment on boy's face
Slideshow
Person taking food from oven
Q&A
 
sniffling child
Slideshow
wound care true or false
Slideshow
 
caring for wounds
Slideshow
Harvest mite
Slideshow
 

Pollen counts, treatment tips, and more.

It's nothing to sneeze at.

Loading ...

Sending your email...

This feature is temporarily unavailable. Please try again later.

Thanks!

Now check your email account on your mobile phone to download your new app.

WebMD the app

Get first aid information. Whenever. Wherever... with your iPhone, iPad or Android.

Find Out More