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AJNR Am J Neuroradiol. 2009 Oct;30(9):1637-45. doi: 10.3174/ajnr.A1607. Epub 2009 Apr 16.

Endovascular treatment of epistaxis.

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Division of Neuroradiology, Department of Medical Imaging, Toronto Western Hospital, Toronto, Ontario, Canada.


Epistaxis is a common condition that can be managed conservatively in most cases. When these measures, including anterior and posterior packing of the nasal cavity, are unsuccessful at controlling the bleeding, interruption of the blood supply to the sinonasal area can be performed, either by surgical ligation or by transarterial embolization. Embolization should be preceded by thorough diagnostic angiography. Aside from aiding with subsequent selective catheterization and embolization, such angiography may reveal significant anatomic anomalies, anastomoses, or an unsuspected cause of epistaxis. Taking these findings into account, the interventionalist may decide to refrain from embolization or adjust the technique to minimize the risk of adverse events, which are mostly related to inadvertent embolization of the internal carotid artery or ophthalmic artery. We present a review of the various causes of epistaxis and the treatment options, with emphasis on endovascular embolization. We also describe the protocol of our institution for endovascular management of this condition.

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