Epistaxis and mortality

J Laryngol Otol. 2018 Dec;132(12):1061-1066. doi: 10.1017/S0022215118002013. Epub 2018 Nov 20.


Background: Epistaxis is a common emergency presentation to ENT. The 'Epistaxis 2016: national audit of management' collected prospective data over a 30-day audit window in 113 centres. A 30-day all-cause mortality rate of 3.4 per cent was identified. This study examines in more detail the subgroup of patients who died during the audit period.

Methods: There were 985 eligible patients identified. Of these, 33 patients died within the audit period. World Health Organization bleeding score, Modified Early Warning System score, haemostasis time, source of referral, co-morbidities and cause of death were investigated from the dataset.

Results: Patients who died were more likely to come from a ward environment, have co-existing cardiovascular disease, diabetes or a bleeding diathesis, be on antithrombotic medication, or have received a blood transfusion. Patients did not die from exsanguination.

Conclusion: Epistaxis may be seen as a general marker of poor health and a poor prognostic sign.

Keywords: Clinical Audit; Epistaxis; Hemorrhage; Mortality.

Publication types

  • Multicenter Study

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Cause of Death*
  • Epistaxis / mortality*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Medical Audit
  • Middle Aged
  • Prospective Studies
  • Referral and Consultation / statistics & numerical data
  • Risk Factors