Stephen J. Schueler, M.D.

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Subconjunctival Hemorrhage Overview

What is a subconjunctival hemorrhage?
A person with a subconjunctival hemorrhage has bleeding between the sclera and the conjunctiva. The sclera is the white potion of the eye, and the conjunctiva is the clear, thin membrane that covers the sclera. A subconjunctival hemorrhage is caused by an eye injury or caused by increased pressure in the eye. Coughing, lifting, sneezing, laughing, or straining during a bowel movement increase pressure in the eye.

What are the symptoms of subconjunctival hemorrhage?
The main symptom of subconjunctival hemorrhage is eye redness, caused by blood that collects over the white portion of the eye. The bleeding does not cover the colored part of the eye or the pupil. The bleeding does not cause eye pain or a change in vision.

How does the doctor treat a subconjunctival hemorrhage?
A subconjunctival hemorrhage resolves without treatment: the blood is absorbed by the body in a fashion similar to a bruise.

Continue to Subconjunctival Hemorrhage Incidence

Last Updated: Aug 3, 2010 References
Authors: Stephen J. Schueler, MD; John H. Beckett, MD; D. Scott Gettings, MD
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PubMed Subconjunctival Hemorrhage References
  1. Garcia GE. Management of ocular emergencies and urgent eye problems. Am Fam Physician. 1996 Feb 1;53(2):565-74. [8629538]
  2. Superstein R, Gomolin JE, Hammouda W, Rosenberg A, Overbury O, Arsenault C. Prevalence of ocular hemorrhage in patients receiving warfarin therapy. Can J Ophthalmol. 2000 Dec;35(7):385-9. [11192447]
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