Interviewer: How to handle a bloody nose that doesn't seem to want to stop bleeding. Emergency room Dr. Troy Madsen, what should a person do?
Dr. Madsen: Bloody noses are a very common thing that we see in the emergency department and these can be very messy and, sometimes, really tough to stop. But the thing I tell people, the key is if you're at home, hold pressure on your nose. Don't hold it on the bony part of your nose. Hold it on the soft part of your nose on the outside and hold pressure for 15 minutes. You'll be really tempted after two or three minutes to let up and look, but just keep holding pressure.
If you look after 15 minutes and it's still bleeding, hold pressure for another 15 minutes. Look again, if it's still bleeding, another 15 minutes. So three times total. If it's still bleeding at that point, you may need to come to the emergency department, but 95% of the time, this is going to work. Most times, it's going to keep you out of the ER.
updated: February 22, 2021 originally published: January 25, 2019
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