Nose bleeds anyone?

Hi, I never normally suffer from nosebleeds, but since starting FEC I have had bloody snots. However, 1 week after 3rd FEC I developed a terrible nosebleed, and didn’t know what to do having never suffered from them before! Is this a side effect of FEC chemo? Any tips on how to deal with it would be appreciated.

Sue xx

Poor you Sue. I had that as well with the FEC - the “bloody snots” rather than a full blown nose bleed. It is a possible side effect of the chemo, and you should let the chemo unit know. Most straightforward nose bleeds can be stopped quite easily by bending forward, pinching the end of the nose closed and breathing through your mouth. You need to do this for quite a while to let a clot form. (Don’t lean back because then you are just swallowing the blood). An ice pack to the back of the neck can also help. Don’t blow your nose for a while afterwards! If it won’t stop don’t hesitate to call for medical help (your clotting factors might be affected by the chemo). Hope this helps a bit, and hope you don’t get any more! Good luck. Sarah x

Thanks Sarah - appreciated. Not a side effect listed in my list of possibilities! It wasn’t the best start to this morning as I got it just as I was getting ready to race to the airport with daughter! All glammed up to see other Mums and got blood over scarf, shirt etc etc! Thanks for the tip on how to deal with it. Will mention to chemo nurse when I see her on Thursday, unless I develop more! Sue xx

Hi Sue, I do ordinarily suffer from nosebleeds and know how distressing it can be when it is heavy so I’ve been surprised that I’ve not had more nosebleeds since starting chemo - I had my first and only nose bleed this Friday gone, a week after my 4th dose of epirubicin and then it was only a small one (albeit twice in one day - and which almost brought me to tears when someone asked me if I was okay - I was at my jewellery course at the time). Once it has stopped I find breathing through my mouth instead of my nose helps - even if only psychosomatically - but I’ve always been led to believe that while it is bleeding you should keep your head forward to prevent you from choking on any blood. I’m not sure how medically accurate this is - I know some people advocate tipping your head back - but its the approach I take. I did mention my small nosebleed to my nurse when she rang, also on Friday, and she told me to contact her if they become more heavy/frequent as I guess that with the chemo the platelets are also low, which may cause difficulties.

I’m not sure I’ve given you any tips on how to deal with them but wish you all the bestin the rest of your treatment and hope that it is just a one off!


Thanks for your input Naz, glad to know its not just me! All the best to you too with the rest of your treatment x

Hi Sue,

I had bloody tissues when I blew my nose all the way through chemo and the odd proper nosebleed too. Rest assured…it’s just another of the chemo pleasantries!!

sheana x

Oh the joys - thanks Sheana xx

Hi Sue
If it happens again maybe you should contact the chemo nurses and let them knoe in case your platelets have dropped? - They might have some more suggestions for you. Good luck xxx

I actually talked to my onc about this in our first meeting. I’ve been prone to anaemia in my life and I know nose bleeds can be a symptom. He did explain that chemo does have an effect on your red cell count as well as the white cell count but the white cells rise and fall quickly whereas the red cells are effected but not as dramatically so you should mention it as you may be needing some iron etc. I’ve been using spatone to get my levels back up after the surgery so I start chemo as well as I can.

Roll on monday… gulp :wink:

Thanks. Got nadir bloods taken last Friday - will check results with oncologist tomorrow. All the best to you with your chemo on Monday - will be thinking of you. Let us all know how you go

Sue xxx