Treating Nosebleeds The Army Way

Treating Nosebleeds The Army Way

Today we present a short excerpt from the U.S. Army Medical Department Center & School’s Subcourse MD 0547 Edition 100, Eye, Ear and Nose Injuries.  This is the procedure that the Army trains its medical specialists to use in treating epistaxis, AKA nosebleeds.  Read on and learn the causes of nosebleeeds and how to treat nosebleeds the Army way.  Make sure to seek medical attention if the bleeding persists.

Treat A Patient With Epistaxis (Nosebleed)


A casualty suffering with epistaxis (nosebleed) should be treated immediately.  Prolonging treatment could cause an excessive loss of blood that could develop into a more serious situation.  This lesson will provide you with the causes of and the treatment for epistaxis [nosebleed]. 


Bleeding from the nose can be caused by the following conditions:

  • Injury from trauma to the face or head and/or picking of the nose.
  • Drying and crusting of nasal mucosa.
  • Diseases, including hypertension and local infection such as sinusitis or rhinitis.


Most epistaxis can be treated successfully by the following procedures.

  1. Tell patient not to breathe through his nose and not to blow his nose.
  2. Tell patient to sit facing you.
  3. Tell patient to tilt his head slightly forward.
  4. Tell patient to pinch the fatty part of his nose [for] 5 to 10 minutes.
  5. Apply cold compress (if available) to the bridge of the nose.


NOTE:    If there is a significant amount of bleeding and there is a possibility of shock, the patient should be evacuated or referred for further treatment. (Refer to 081-833-0047, Initiate Treatment for Hypovolemic Shock)

  • Obtain a short history of the patient to include cause, duration, previous incidents of nosebleed, and an estimation of the amount of blood loss.
  • Obtain and record vital signs.
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