Does a nose have to bleed when it goes through trauma to be broken? (photo)

My boyfriend and I were playing basketball and we ran into each other causing his head to smack into my nose. At the very moment it happened I heard a 'snap, crackle, pop' sound. It didn't bleed after it happened, but it did bruise pretty well and I woke up with dark coloring under my right eye even though the left side of my nose hurts worse.(??) I also woke up and my nose was slightly (slowly) bleeding. It is also quite swollen. I'm not sure if a trip to the doctor is worth it or not. HELP PLEASE

Doctor Answers 6

Broken nose?

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A physical exam is necessary to accurately answer your question. The cracking that you heard may have been either the bones or cartilage fracturing. You should be evaluated ASAP to rule out any bleeding into your septum, which can result in a long term nasal deformity if not treated promptly. Once urgent issues are addressed, you and your board certified plastic surgeon can discuss timing of any surgical treatment.

San Antonio Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 18 reviews

Does a nose have to bleed when it goes through trauma to be broken?

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Not having a nosebleed doesn't necessarily rule out a nasal fracture. The crunch that you experienced and your black eye signal a relatively severe injury. The only way to know if you have a fracture that requires repair is to seek a consultation ASAP. Typically within 10-14 days broken, deviated noses can be repaired with a minimally invasive "closed reduction" procedure. I hope this information is helpful for you.

Stephen Weber MD, FACS
Denver Facial Plastic Surgeon

Does a nose have to bleed when it goes through trauma to be broken? (photo) Ashlinn_g New

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You need documentation via a doctor's visit/examination and X-ray of the nasal bones. If the diagnosis is Nasal Fracture than you can determine if you desire corrective surgery... 

Nasal trauma And broken nose

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 Trauma to the nose can result in a displaced or non-displaced  fracture of the nasal bones. This is usually evident on a simple x-ray of the nose. Trauma can also fracture the upper lateral cartilages off of the nasal bones. It is important to be evaluated by an ENT/facial plastic surgeon to document any fracture of the internal or external portion of the nose for medical necessity. Many times, a deviated septum also results from a fracture of the nasal septum. For many examples of broken nose repair in our practice, please see the link below

William Portuese, MD
Seattle Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 158 reviews

Broken Nose Bleeding

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A fracture of the nasal bones almost always results in a nose bleed.  When a bone is broken, the edges of the bone and the attached soft tissue will bleed at the damaged edges.  Usually the delicate lining on the inside of your nose which is attached to the underside of the bone tears and blood enters your nose where it will then drip out as a nose bleed.  A black eye would indicate that there was bleeding into the tissues that went the other direction, into the soft tissues under the eyes.  It is almost impossible to have a nasal fracture without at least one of those two things, usually you have both.

A nasal fracture should be set by examined by a doctor skilled in this field.  If the bone is displaced, you will have cosmetic and potential functional issues if you do not set it.  It is possible to fracture the nose where the bones don't move out of position, in which case you can leave it alone.  Frequently the best time to set a nose is 1 to 2 weeks after the injury.  At this time, most of the swelling is gone allowing for accurate evaluation and treatment.  Waiting more than 2 weeks may result in the bones setting in the wrong place and then requiring much more involved surgery.

Louis W. Apostolakis, MD
Austin Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 37 reviews

A broken nose usually bleeds but not necessarily.

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If the nose is broken and there is no violation to the lining inside the nose is possible for no nosebleed to occur in the wake of a fracture. You should have this checked out by a plastic surgeon.

These answers are for educational purposes and should not be relied upon as a substitute for medical advice you may receive from your physician. If you have a medical emergency, please call 911. These answers do not constitute or initiate a patient/doctor relationship.