Subconjunctival Hemorrhage - Symptoms and Signs

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What were the symptoms and signs of your subconjunctival hemorrhage?

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What are subconjunctival hemorrhage symptoms and signs?

Most of the time, no symptoms are associated with a subconjunctival hemorrhage other than seeing blood over the white part of the eye.

  • Very rarely people experience pain when the hemorrhage begins. When the bleeding first occurs, one may notice a sense of fullness in the eye or under the lid. Mild pressure around the eye may also be experienced. As the hemorrhage resolves, some people may feel very mild irritation of the eye or merely a sense of awareness of the eye.
  • The hemorrhage itself is an obvious, sharply outlined bright red area overlying the sclera. The entire white part of the eye may occasionally be covered by blood.
  • In a spontaneous subconjunctival hemorrhage, no blood will exit from the eye. If one blots the eye with a tissue, there should be no blood on the tissue.
  • The hemorrhage will appear larger within the first 24 hours after its onset and then will slowly decrease in size as the blood is absorbed.

Call a primary-care provider or ophthalmologist (a medical doctor who specializes in eye care and surgery) if the subconjunctival hemorrhage does not get better within two weeks or if it has happened multiple times.

Also, call your health-care provider if you have a hemorrhage in both eyes at the same time or if the subconjunctival hemorrhage coincides with a new onset of easy bruising or bleeding gums.

Go to a doctor immediately if the subconjunctival hemorrhage is associated with

  • pain,
  • changes in vision (for example, blurry vision, double vision, difficulty seeing),
  • a history of recent injury or trauma,
  • a history of bleeding disorder,
  • a history of high blood pressure.
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See what others are saying

Comment from: Mary Moo, 65-74 Female (Patient) Published: May 28

I had been bothered with an eyelid and eye irritation for a couple of days and noticed one morning my eye was all red. I'm sure I had rubbed it before the hemorrhage. It's a very scary-looking eye and I've had this happen before, but not for quite a few years.

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Comment from: Katzland, 45-54 Female (Patient) Published: January 14

A couple hours after a chiropractic appointment, I noticed the red patch in my eye; it freaked me out! As described in this article, the next day the red had spread a bit more in my eye. It's now three days later and parts of the red have started to go away! I have felt no pain, but it sure looks weird. I do believe this was the result of that chiropractic appointment. I had felt some mild pain in the soft area to the left of my eye as my chiropractor applied pressure to make an adjustment. That area still hurt a bit the next day, I think there was too much pressure... makes me wonder!

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