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February 2, 1952


Author Affiliations

Rochester, Minn.
From the Section on Otolaryngology and Rhinology, Mayo Clinic.

JAMA. 1952;148(5):355-360. doi:10.1001/jama.1952.02930050027006

As many small boys know from experience, and others will learn soon, bleeding from the nose, as a rule, ceases spontaneously. Epistaxis then can be classed as a relative emergency by the physician. I do not think any of us need rush to see patients who have epistaxis because if enough time elapses the bleeding of about 80% of them will be checked without treatment. However, it is well to remember that when bleeding is persistent, a serious degree of anemia and occasionally death may result.

Deficiencies in the clotting mechanism of the blood are seldom contributing factors in nasal hemorrhage. The bleeding is oftener due to a leak in the side of a vessel, which simply bursts open. When an older person has such a leaking vessel, the vessel tends to gape because of the sclerotic changes in arteries and veins and atrophy of smooth muscle. The bleeding of

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