Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland
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Epistaxis in the Sars-CoV-2 era

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journal contribution
posted on 2022-10-26, 16:51 authored by Michael WalshMichael Walsh, SL Gillanders, C Sheil, P Lacy


Epistaxis was the third most common unscheduled ENT surgical intervention in Ireland in 2019. Otorhinolaryngologists are exposed to a high viral reservoir of Sars-CoV-2, as they are dealing with pathology in the upper respiratory tract. Risk analysis is required to minimise nosocomial transmission. 


A prospective audit of epistaxis management in the outpatients at a tertiary hospital was undertaken pre pandemic. A retrospective review of patients records during the Sars-CoV-2 pandemic. Comparative analysis was utilised to assess outcomes. 


Pre Sars-CoV-2 analysis revealed 14 patients (70%) were manged with rigid endoscopy compared to one (5%) interpandemic. Cauterization treated 20 patients (100%) pre pandemic and four patients (20%) interpandemic. Nasal packing modality differed in that 13 patients (65%) were treated with Nasopore pre pandemic and 14 (70%) with Rapid Rhino interpandemic. This exhibited a paradigm shift in that 18 (90%) patients were managed conservatively with nasal packing interpandemic. 


A paradigm shift in the management of Epistaxis during the pandemic has led to treatment which is less invasive, has less morbidity for the patient, requires less hospital admissions and lessens nosocomial transmission of the Sars-CoV-2. Further study is required given the advent of vaccines and development of various strains Sars-CoV-2. 



The original article is available at

Published Citation

Walsh M, Gillanders SL, Sheil C, Lacy P. Epistaxis in the Sars-CoV-2 era. Ir Med J. 2022;115(1)521

Publication Date

January 2022


  • Beaumont Hospital


Irish Medical Association


  • Published Version (Version of Record)