Condition 101 About Subconjunctival Hemorrhage

What is the definition of Subconjunctival Hemorrhage?

Subconjunctival hemorrhage is a bright red patch appearing in the white of the eye. This condition is one of several disorders called red eye.

What are the causes for Subconjunctival Hemorrhage?

The white of the eye (sclera) is covered with a thin layer of clear tissue called the bulbar conjunctiva. A subconjunctival hemorrhage occurs when a small blood vessel breaks open and bleeds within the conjunctiva. The blood is often very visible, but since it is confined within the conjunctiva, it does not move and cannot be wiped away. The problem may occur without injury. It is often first noticed when you wake up and look in a mirror.

Some things that may cause a subconjunctival hemorrhage include:

  • Sudden increases in pressure, such as violent sneezing or coughing
  • Having high blood pressure or taking blood thinners
  • Rubbing the eyes
  • Viral infection
  • Certain eye surgeries or injuries

A subconjunctival hemorrhage is common in newborn infants. In this case, the condition is thought to be caused by the pressure changes across the infant's body during childbirth.

What are the symptoms for Subconjunctival Hemorrhage?

A bright red patch appears on the white of the eye. The patch does not cause pain and there is no discharge from the eye. Vision does not change.

What are the current treatments for Subconjunctival Hemorrhage?

No treatment is needed. You should have your blood pressure checked regularly.

What is the outlook (prognosis) for Subconjunctival Hemorrhage?

A subconjunctival hemorrhage most often goes away on its own in about 2 to 3 weeks. The white of the eye may look yellow as the problem goes away.

What are the possible complications for Subconjunctival Hemorrhage?

In most cases, there are no complications. Rarely, a total subconjunctival hemorrhage may be a sign of a serious vascular disorder in older people.

When should I contact a medical professional for Subconjunctival Hemorrhage?

Call your provider if a bright red patch appears on the white of the eye.

How do I prevent Subconjunctival Hemorrhage?

There is no known prevention.



Bowling B. Conjunctiva. In: Bowling B, ed. Kanski's Clinical Ophthalmology. 8th ed. Philadelphia, PA: Elsevier; 2016:chap 5.

Guluma K, Lee JE. Ophthalmology. In: Walls RM, Hockberger RS, Gausche-Hill M, eds. Rosen's Emergency Medicine: Concepts and Clinical Practice. 9th ed. Philadelphia, PA: Elsevier; 2018:chap 61.

Prajna V, Vijayalakshmi P. Conjunctiva and subconjunctival tissue. In: Lambert SR, Lyons CJ, eds. Taylor and Hoyt's Pediatric Ophthalmology and Strabismus. 5th ed. Philadelphia, PA: Elsevier; 2017:chap 31.

Top Global Doctors For Subconjunctival Hemorrhage

Tatsuya T. Mimura
Tokyo, JP
Satoru Yamagami
Tokyo, JP
Hidetaka Noma
Tokyo, JP
Hasan Oncul
Diyarbakir, TR
Emile Calenda
Rouen, FR

Latest Advances On Subconjunctival Hemorrhage

  • Condition: Advanced Pediatric Vasoproliferative Disorders with Total Retinal Detachments
  • Journal: Graefe's archive for clinical and experimental ophthalmology = Albrecht von Graefes Archiv fur klinische und experimentelle Ophthalmologie
  • Treatment Used: Subretinal Injection of Ranibizumab (SRR)
  • Number of Patients: 26
  • Published —
This study described the surgical procedures, outcomes, and complications of a novel technique of subretinal injection of ranibizumab (SRR) in the treatment of children with vascularly active total retinal detachments in one or both eyes.
  • Condition: Chronic hepatitis C virus (HCV)
  • Journal: International ophthalmology
  • Treatment Used: Direct-acting antiviral treatment
  • Number of Patients: 200
  • Published —
The aim of this study is to detect the incidence of ocular complications encountered in chronic hepatitis C virus (HCV) patients treated with direct-acting antiviral drugs.

Clinical Trials For Subconjunctival Hemorrhage

Clinical Trial
  • Status: Not yet recruiting
  • Phase: N/A
  • Intervention Type: Drug
  • Participants: 66
  • Start Date: February 2021
The Effect of Brimonidine Tartrate on Subconjunctival Hemorrhage During Pterygium Surgery
Clinical Trial
  • Status: Not yet recruiting
  • Phase: N/A
  • Intervention Type: Drug, Other
  • Participants: 100
  • Start Date: September 2020
Topical Use of Tranexamic Acid for Prevention of Subconjunctival Hemorrhage After Intravitreal Injections