Health A-Z

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Diagnosis

In otherwise healthy people, most mild anterior nosebleeds can be self-diagnosed and treated at home. If your nosebleed is severe and does not respond to first-aid measures, you will need to see a doctor immediately.

The doctor will review your health history and current medications. He or she also will ask you to estimate the amount of blood you've lost, which usually is based on how long you've been bleeding and the number of soaked towels or tissues you've used. Next, the doctor will examine your nose to determine where the bleeding is located. If necessary, he or she may insert a lighted, tube-like instrument called an endoscope into your nose to see the site of bleeding. Blood tests may be done to check for any bleeding abnormalities.

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From Health A-Z, Harvard Health Publications. Copyright 2007 by the President and Fellows of Harvard College. All rights reserved. Written permission is required to reproduce, in any manner, in whole or in part, the material contained herein. To make a reprint request, contact Harvard Health Publications. Used with permission of StayWell.

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