Broken Nose

How do I know if I have broken my nose?

  • A broken nose is extremely tender to touch, swollen with typically bruising around the eyes (black eyes)
  • Nose bleeds generally occur immediately after injury and lasts for a short time (around 10-15 minutes)
  • Difficulty breathing out of the nose
  • Change in the nasal shape

When to seek emergency treatment

The following symptoms warrant urgent medical attention:

  • Breathing difficulty – to ensure that there is no septal haematoma (blood clot in the midline partition of the nose)
  • Persistent nose bleed
  • Leakage of clear watery fluid from the nose (this could indicate a serious head injury)
  • Breach in the nasal skin
  • Visual disturbances
  • Loss of consciousness

Treatment of a broken nose

  • Emergency treatment is variable addressing the above issues
  • It is best to confirm with an ENT specialist if the nose is broken or not
  • The best time to assess the nose is approximately 7-10 days after the trauma when the swelling starts to settle down
  • If the nose is deviated, manipulation of nasal bones is indicated, and generally carried out within 2-3 weeks after injury

Surgery for a broken nose

  • Manipulation of nasal bones is a simple procedure ideally done under a general anaesthetic. The bones will be manipulated to their original position where possible
  • A small splint or dressing is applied to the nose, which is removed 7-10 days after procedure
  • If the above procedure fails to correct the nose then a surgical procedure called Septorhinoplasty is warranted and is generally carried out after 3 months after the original injury

Please click HERE for more information on the ENTUK website



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