Subconjunctival hemorrhage

burst blood vessel in eye getting bigger

A subconjunctival hemorrhage (sub-kun-JUNK-tih-vul HEM-uh-ruj) occurs when a small blood vessel breaks just beneath the clear surface area of your eye (conjunctiva).

You might not recognize you have a subconjunctival hemorrhage until you look in the mirror and discover the white part of your eye is intense red.

The conjunctiva can’t absorb the blood extremely quickly, so the blood is caught under this transparent surface area. A subconjunctival hemorrhage might fret you, but it’s usually a harmless condition that disappears within a couple of weeks.

Subconjunctival hemorrhage often occurs with no apparent damage to your eye, or it might be the result of a strong sneeze or cough that caused a blood vessel to break. You don’t require any certain treatment for a subconjunctival hemorrhage.

Broken Blood Vessel in Eye Symptoms

The most obvious sign of a subconjunctival hemorrhage is a brilliant red patch on the white (sclera) of your eye.

Despite its bloody look, a subconjunctival hemorrhage should cause no modification in your vision, no discharge from your eye and no pain. Your only discomfort might be a scratchy sensation on the surface of your eye.

When to see a doctor

If you have recurrent subconjunctival hemorrhages or other bleeding, speak to your doctor.

Causes of broken blood vessel in eye

The reason for subconjunctival hemorrhage isn’t constantly understood. Nevertheless, the following actions might trigger a small blood vessel to burst in your eye:

  • Violent coughing.
  • Powerful sneezing.
  • Heavy lifting.
  • Throwing up.

In some cases, subconjunctival hemorrhage might result from an eye injury, such as from:

  • Roughly rubbing your eye.
  • Severe eye infection.
  • Injury, such as a foreign things injuring your eye.


Danger aspects for subconjunctival hemorrhage consist of:

  • Diabetes.
  • Hypertension (high blood pressure).
  • Particular blood-thinning medications, such as warfarin (Coumadin) and aspirin.
  • Blood-clotting disorders.


Although you might feel uncomfortable about the appearance of your eye, health problems from a subconjunctival hemorrhage are uncommon. If your condition is due to trauma, your doctor may examine your eye to ensure you do not have other eye complications or injury.

Getting ready for your visit

You’re likely to start by seeing your family physician or a family doctor. Nevertheless, sometimes when you phone call to set up a consultation, you may be referred right away to an eye doctor (eye doctor).

Subconjunctival Hemorrhage video

Since visits can be brief, and because there’s frequently a lot to talk about, it’s a smart idea to be well gotten ready for your appointment. Here’s some info to help you prepare for your appointment, and what to expect from your doctor.

What you can do

Jot down any symptoms you’re experiencing, consisting of any that might seem unrelated to the reason for which you arranged the consultation.
Write down essential individual info, including any major tensions or current life changes.
Bring a list of all medications, vitamins or supplements that you’re taking.
Jot down concerns to askyour doctor.

Your time with your doctor is restricted, so preparing a list of questions will help you maximize your time together. List your concerns from essential to least vital in case time runs out. For subconjunctival hemorrhage, some standard questions to ask your doctor consist of:.

  • Exactly what has likely triggered this issue?
  • Besides the most likely cause, exactly what are other possible causes for my symptoms?
  • What sort of tests do I require?
  • Is my condition most likely temporary or chronic?
  • What is the very best strategy?
  • What are the alternatives to the primary method that you’re recommending?
  • I have these other health conditions. How can I best manage them together?
  • Are there any constraints that I have to follow?
  • Should I see an expert?
  • Exist any pamphlets or other printed material that I can take home with me? Do you advise that I go to a website associated to this issue?

In addition to the questions that you’ve prepared to ask your doctor, don’t think twice to ask concerns during your consultation at any time that you don’t understand something.

Exactly what to anticipate from your doctor

Your doctor is likely to ask you a number of concerns. Being ready to address them may reserve time to go over any points you wish to spend more time on. Your doctor might ask:

  • When did you initially see the issue?
  • Do you have any symptoms associated with this?

Tests and diagnosis

Your doctor or eye doctor (eye doctor) will normally diagnose subconjunctival hemorrhage by looking at your eye. You’ll likely require no other tests.

However, your doctor may ask you some questions about your general health and symptoms, perform an eye assessment, take your high blood pressure, and get a regular blood test making sure you don’t have a potentially major bleeding disorder.


There’s no recognized method to prevent subconjunctival hemorrhage unless there is a plainly identifiable cause for the bleeding, such as might happen if you’re taking blood-thinning medications or if you have a bleeding condition.

If you have to rub your eyes, rub your eyes carefully. Rubbing your eyes too hard can trigger minor injury to your eyes.

Last Update - September 21, 2017


The Author

Reyus Mammadli

As a healthy lifestyle advisor I try to guide individuals in becoming more aware of living well and healthy through a series of proactive and preventive measures, disease prevention steps, recovery after illness or medical procedures. Education: Bachelor Degree of Medical Equipment and Electronics.

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