Bacon for nosebleeds: Case report

According to a new study “nasal packing with strips of cured pork” could be an effective way to treat uncontrollable nosebleeds.

Ian Humphreys, Sonal Saraiya, Walter Belenky and James Dworkin, at Detroit Medical Centre in Michigan proceeded to treat a four year old girl who had a rare hereditary disorder that brings prolonged bleeding, publishing their findings in the Annals of Otology, Rhinology and Laryngology. They write, “Cured salted pork crafted as a nasal tampon and packed within the nasal vaults successfully stopped nasal hemorrhage promptly, effectively, and without sequelae…To our knowledge, this represents the first description of nasal packing with strips of cured pork for treatment of life-threatening hemorrhage in a patient with Glanzmann thrombasthenia.”

The authors write that there have been anecdotal reports of using pork to treat general epistaxis, i.e. nosebleed. According to a report in the Guardian, doctors in the 1940s and 1950s reported the benefits of salt pork in stopping the occasional nosebleed. The technique fell into disuse, they speculate, because “packing with salt pork was fraught with bacterial and parasitic complications. As newer synthetic hemostatic agents and surgical techniques evolved, the use of packing with salt pork diminished.”

Ananya Mandal

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Ananya Mandal

Ananya is a doctor by profession, lecturer by vocation and a medical writer by passion. She specialized in Clinical Pharmacology after her bachelor's (MBBS). For her, health communication is not just writing complicated reviews for professionals but making medical knowledge understandable and available to the general public as well.

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