Nasal Pack Removal Advice Sheet

  • Reference Number: HEY-731/2016
  • Departments: Neurosurgery

This leaflet has been produced to give you general information. Most of your questions should be answered by this leaflet. It is not intended to replace the discussion between you and the healthcare team, but may act as a starting point for discussion. If after reading it you have any concerns or require further explanation, please discuss this with a member of the healthcare team.


This advice sheet has been produced to give you information about nasal pack removal.
Dressings may have been placed into each side of your nose to prevent bleeding, either after a severe nose bleed or surgery. These dressings are called ‘packs’ and may block your nose so that you have to breathe through your mouth. Often they are dissolvable but sometimes they need to be removed before you go home.

The nurse or doctor will explain the procedure to you before they start. You will be encouraged to have pain relief 20 minutes prior to the removal of the pack. You will be asked if you need to use the bathroom before the procedure as you will need to rest in bed for 30 – 60 minutes after removal of the pack.

You may be asked to suck ice for 5 minutes prior to removal of the pack as this reduces the risk of bleeding after the removal of the pack but this is not necessary.

You will be asked to sit up in bed; the nurse or doctor will apply a white apron over your head and ask you to hold a bowl under your chin to hold the removed packs.
Packs are removed one side at a time.

Once removed, the nurse or doctor may apply pressure with their fingers to the fleshy part of your nose for 3 – 5 minutes. They will check for bleeding after 3 – 5 minutes. If no active bleeding is seen, a bolster dressing will be applied, which can stay in place until you get home.

The nurse or doctor may provide you with some ice. If you feel any bleeding or a trickling down the back of the throat or at the front, suck ice and use the buzzer provided to call nursing staff and then inform them. If, after 30 minutes, there has been no bleeding, you can walk about after confirming this with the nursing or medical staff.

Under the Data Protection Act (1998), Hull and East Yorkshire Hospitals NHS Trust is responsible for maintaining the confidentiality of any information we hold on you.

This leaflet was produced by the Neurosurgery Department, Hull and East Yorkshire Hospitals NHS Trust, and will be reviewed in December 2019.

General Advice and Consent

Most of your questions should have been answered by this leaflet, but remember that this is only a starting point for discussion with the healthcare team.

Consent to treatment

Before any doctor, nurse or therapist examines or treats you, they must seek your consent or permission. In order to make a decision, you need to have information from health professionals about the treatment or investigation which is being offered to you. You should always ask them more questions if you do not understand or if you want more information.

The information you receive should be about your condition, the alternatives available to you, and whether it carries risks as well as the benefits. What is important is that your consent is genuine or valid. That means:

  • you must be able to give your consent
  • you must be given enough information to enable you to make a decision
  • you must be acting under your own free will and not under the strong influence of another person

Information about you

We collect and use your information to provide you with care and treatment. As part of your care, information about you will be shared between members of a healthcare team, some of whom you may not meet. Your information may also be used to help train staff, to check the quality of our care, to manage and plan the health service, and to help with research. Wherever possible we use anonymous data.

We may pass on relevant information to other health organisations that provide you with care. All information is treated as strictly confidential and is not given to anyone who does not need it. If you have any concerns please ask your doctor, or the person caring for you.

Under the General Data Protection Regulation and the Data Protection Act 2018 we are responsible for maintaining the confidentiality of any information we hold about you. For further information visit the following page: Confidential Information about You.

If you or your carer needs information about your health and wellbeing and about your care and treatment in a different format, such as large print, braille or audio, due to disability, impairment or sensory loss, please advise a member of staff and this can be arranged.