Doctor's Notes on Subconjunctival Hemorrhage (Bleeding in the Eye)
A subconjunctival hemorrhage describes a broken blood vessel that produces blood in between the conjunctiva and the sclera of the eye. Bright red conjunctiva or patches of bright red in the eye are the chief signs and symptoms of this type of hemorrhage. Rarely, blood may ooze through the conjunctiva and produce pink and/or red tears. In general, there is no pain, but the eye may feel full or heavy. Signs and symptoms start resolving within a few days if there is no long-term underlying cause.
Most subconjunctival hemorrhages are formed spontaneously without an obvious cause. However, other related causes that can result in sudden increases in pressure that can cause blood vessels in the eye to leak blood include
- straining during a bowel movement (constipation),
- lifting heavy objects,
- eye rubbing,
- bleeding that follows eye surgery,
- high blood pressure,
- bleeding disorders (for example, vitamin K deficiency, hemophilia), and
- medications such as blood thinners.
In addition, underlying causes like severe infections or growths in or on the eye (tumors or cancers) may cause pressure on eye blood vessels, enough to cause subconjunctival hemorrhages.
What Is the Treatment for a Subconjunctival Hemorrhage?
Treatment of any underlying disease (see above) is indicated to halt further bleeding. The following activities could trigger bleeding in the eye:
- Heavy lifting or straining that may stress and rupture blood vessels
If there is no underlying disease that is triggering the bleeding, without further incidences of sneezing (for example), the eye can absorb the blood in about 1-2 weeks and no treatment is necessary. However, artificial teardrops may soothe the irritated eyes. You should see a medical caregiver if the problem reoccurs or pain occurs with the subconjunctival hemorrhage.
Must Read Articles:
Coughs (Acute and Chronic)A cough is a symptom of an underlying disease or condition. A chronic or persistent cough may signal certain lung conditions that should be evaluated by a healthcare professional. Common causes of coughs include infection, allergies, lung disease, medications, and GERD (reflux). Acute coughs are categorized as infectious or non-infectious. Chronic cough (persistent cough) have a variety of causes and should be evaluated by physician. Treatment of cough, acute cough, chronic or persistent cough depends on the cause of the cough.
Eye InjuriesEye injuries range from the very minor, such as getting soap in the eye, to the catastrophic, resulting in permanent loss of vision. Treatment of eye injuries depends on the nature of the injury. Prompt evaluation and treatment is necessary to protect vision.
Eye PainEye pain has many causes, signs, symptoms, and treatments. It's also described as pain behind the eye, eye socket pain, or shooting pain in the eye. Headaches and sinusitis can be causes of eye pain.
High Blood Pressure (Hypertension)High blood pressure (hypertension) may be present in an individual, without any symptoms. Thus, it is called the "silent killer." Causes of high blood pressure include heart disease, kidney disease, tumors, birth control, alcohol, thyroid dysfunction, and birth control pills.Treatment of high blood pressure is generally through diet, exercise, and medication if necessary.
Vomiting and NauseaVomiting and nausea are common complaints that accompany many conditions and diseases. A few common causes of vomiting and nausea include food poisoning, viruses, vertigo, head injuries, gallbladder disease, appendicitis, migraine, brain tumors, and infections. Treatment of vomiting and nausea depend on the cause of the symptoms.
Kasper, D.L., et al., eds. Harrison's Principles of Internal Medicine, 19th Ed. United States: McGraw-Hill Education, 2015.