Different Causes Of Bleeding Nose: Treatment For Nasal Bleeds

Nasal bleed in medical terminology is called as epistaxis. Bleeding from nose can be caused due to various reasons.

  • Local Causes
  • Nasal bleeds due to inflammation
  • Systemic Causes

Local Causes For A Bleeding Nose

  • Trauma: Trauma to nose, para nasal sinuses or head may result in bleed which usually stops in a short time. It may be associated with CSF (cerebro-spinal fluid) if there is a fracture through the base of the skull.
  • Post operative: After any operative procedure of nose and para nasal sinuses, primary or reactionary bleeding may be seen.
  • Picking the nose: Especially Litttle’s area accounts for almost 90% cases.
    This is area where arteries unite to form a plexus hence a little stretching or picking may cause bleed.

Inflammatory Causes For A Bleeding Nose

Acute inflammation leading to blood in your nose:

  • Nasal diphtheria is characterized by blood stained discharge from nostril in children. A membrane forms in the nose due to presence of corny bacterium diphtheria which confirms the diagnosis.
  • Acute rhinitis and sinusitis may sometimes results in bleeding.
  • Adenoids may cause inflammation and congestion in the nose leading to bleeding.

Chronic Inflammation Causing Nasal Bleeds

Chronic rhinitis and chronic sinusitis are the cause of chronic inflammation.

  • Rhinitis sicca: In this condition, vestibules of the nose dry up leading to the formation of scabs. If the person picks the nose to remove the scabs it may result in bleeding.
  • Rhinosporidiosis: There is mulberry like red polypoid swelling which may bleed profusely.
  • Tuberculosis, syphilis, leprosy may produce granulomas with scanty bleeding.
  • Neoplasms: Angiomas from nasal septum may bleed profusely. Malignancy’s commonest areas are maxillary sinus, ethmoidal sinus. An elderly person with unilateral epistaxis should be investigated for malignancy.
  • Foreign bodies may cause bleeding. Unilateral blood stained discharge with foul smell in a child should arouse suspicion of foreign body.

Nasal Bleeding Due To Systemic Causes

  • Hypertension
  • Bleeding disorders like leukemia, hemophilia and purpura.
  • Increased pressure in SVC (superior vena cava) due to mitral stenosis or superior mediastinal tumors.
  • Environmental causes due to reduced atmospheric pressure and dryness. Bleeding may also occur at high altitudes.
  • Infections may cause bleeding due to dryness and congestion of nose e.g. viral fever, enteric fever and rheumatic fever.
  • Drugs like salicyclate and anti-coagulants may cause bleeding in nostrils.

Treatment For A Bleeding Nose

Treatment of specific causes should be done immediately.

First Aid For Nasal Bleeds

  • Ice or cold pack application on the bridge of the nose. It may arrest bleeding by reflux vasoconstriction.
  • Pinching the nose for a minute keeps pressure on Little’s area. It may stop bleeding from that area in some cases.
  • Trotter’s procedure may be used in hypertensive persons if bleeding happens. In this person sits up, slightly inclined forward with open mouth and breaths quietly. Do not swallow the blood, spit it out. Avoid Forceful cleaning of the nose.

Home Remedies For A Bleeding Nose

  • If the bleeding is due to crusting in vestibule as in rhinitis sicca; application of lubricants like oil, Vaseline or clarified butter prevents crust formation.
  • Packing of nose: If bleeding persists nose is packed with ribbon gauze dipped in Vaseline or liquid paraffin and packed is removed after 48 hrs. This is anterior packing.
  • Juice of flower of pomegranate should be used for deep inhalation.
  • Juice of fresh green grass 5 to 10 drops in each nostrils gives immediate result.


  1. tefo said:

    I always have nasal bleeding especially when taking a bath, I have experienced this since 2004 until now there is no change. I cannot find the correct explanation or the cause of my nasal bleeding problem. What treatment should I take for curing my bleeding nose?

    June 8, 2009
  2. SMN said:

    I always have nasal bleeding often when i do some physical work for a while, when sunlight falls on me for a while or some days it simply bleeds. My nose bleeds also when I am asleep also and my pillows get bloody red. I have tried many treatments for bleeding nose, but not cured yet. How can i cure my nose bleeding problem?

    October 17, 2009
  3. Marvin Marcelo said:

    My nose is bleeding 3 days now in this month of October. Every morning, my doctor says that I have allergic rhinitis, only in the morning when i wake up. When i spit, there is some blood, so what is the problem in my nose? How can I cure the blood in my nose

    October 27, 2009
    • Sam said:

      Bleeding nose or epistaxis in adults may rarely occur due to blood pressure, exposure to heat sources like fire and sun. So make sure these are not causing your nose to bleed.

      Some of these remedies may provide you with relief from your bleeding nose:
      1. Apply ice packs outside your nose
      2. Wash your face with clean and cold water
      3. Avoid sneezing or straining your nose in any way.
      4. Inhale basil leaf juice or just basil leaf as is.
      5. Avoid strenuous physical activity.

      November 3, 2009
  4. B said:

    Nose bleeds profusely for long periods of time say one hour or more. It runs out of the nose (both nostrils) and then just drips for long periods of time (more then a few minutes). Can putting a cold pack on the bridge of the nose help?

    January 18, 2010
    • Salina said:

      Causes of nose bleeds
      – Trauma to the nose, like nose picking, especially when the nasal membrane is dry and cracked, more so, during the winter months.
      – Infections
      – Allergic and non-allergic rhinitis
      – Hypertension
      – Blood thinning medications such as aspirin, warfarin, or any other anti-inflammatory drug, which prevents normal blood clotting.
      – Alcohol intake
      – Less common causes are tumors and inherited bleeding problems

      A visit to a physician is recommended.
      1. Pinch the soft parts of the nose, between the thumb and index finger.
      2. Pinch the nose for at least five minutes. Repeat, until the bleeding stops.
      3. Ice application (wrapped in a towel) to nose and cheeks will be beneficial.
      4. Watch out! Lean forwards, with the head inclined forward. Leaning back or tilting the head back permits the blood to enter the sinuses and the throat, and can cause gagging or inhaling of the blood.
      5. Sit quietly, keeping the head higher than the level of the heart. Do not lie down.

      January 27, 2010
  5. R J said:

    My father suffering from nasal bleeding two times, what is cause I don’t know but they are diabetic patient and he is taking meds called gluconorm and ramitorva, which contain aspirin 75 mg as a treatment, he is 65 yr old please suggest me why this is so?

    December 23, 2010
  6. PUP said:

    It is very difficult to pin point the cause of nasal bleeding for your father. The cause can be a local one such as trauma, nose picking or a systemic; such as hypertension, leukemia, etc or drugs such as aspirin or anti coagulants.
    In such as situation consult your physician to find the cause, whether it is due to aspirin or is he suffering from hypertension etc.
    After reviewing the condition, your doctor may be in a position to tell you the probable reason of his nasal bleeding.

    December 26, 2010

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