UMEM Educational Pearls

Category: ENT

Title: Epistaxis Control

Keywords: Epistaxis, Nose, Bleeding (PubMed Search)

Posted: 7/10/2007 by Michael Bond, MD (Emailed: 7/8/2007) (Updated: 10/16/2021)
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Direct Pressure: Can be held with two fingers pinching the nares, or you can tape 4 tongue blades together and make your own "clothes pin" that can then be used to pinch the nares. Vasoconstrictor and Anesthesia: Use a 1:1 mixture of topical lidocaine 4% and oxymetazoline can often be mixed together in the same oxymetazoline spray container and then just spray it into the nares. Some IV/IM narcotic pain medication will also help increase patient cooperation. Visualize the bleeding site: Use a HEAD LAMP with an appropriate sized nasal speculum. You may look like Marcus Welby, MD but nothing works as well to see into the nose. Cauterization It is best to cauterize circumferential around the bleeding site prior to directly cauterizing the actual site. Be careful with electrical cautery so has not to perforate the septum. Nasal Packing: Instead of surgilube use Muprion, Bactroban or Bacitracin ointment to lubricate the packing. This will reduce the chance of Toxic Shock Syndrome.