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How long does it take for a burst blood vessel in the eye to heal?


A burst blood vessel in the eye is a common condition that results from trapped blood under the conjunctiva (white surface of your eye). This is also known as a subconjunctival hemorrhage and can occur when a blood vessel breaks. You can think of a subconjunctival hemorrhage like a bruise on the skin. It might change colors, and it might expand before it shrinks. Even though this blood in the eye can look alarming, it is generally harmless. You might have symptoms of itchiness or mild discomfort on the surface of your eye, which you may treat with cold compresses and artificial tears. However harmless it might be, you could be wondering if it will ever go away.


So, how long does it take for a burst blood vessel in the eye to heal? You can expect it to dissolve over the course of 2-3 weeks, although, it might get worse before it gets better.


When asking how long does it take for a burst blood vessel in the eye to heal, you may also be wondering why did the blood vessel burst in the first place?


Our odds of getting a broken blood vessel in the eye increase as we age, but there are some circumstances or history that can increase our chances.


  • Sneezing, coughing, vomiting, straining (valsalva maneuvers)

  • Injury to the eye or infection

  • Taking blood thinning medication (found in many pain relievers)

  • Wearing contact lenses

  • History of blood clotting disorders, diabetes, or high blood pressure

  • Heavy alcohol consumption


At the Annan Retina Eye Center, we want to remind you that subconjunctival hemorrhage does not result in vision changes or severe pain. If you are experiencing any vision changes or severe pain in the setting of a burst blood vessel in your eye, or if the bleed has recurred or is lasting longer than 3 weeks, you can schedule your next visit with Dr. El Annan at the Annan Retina Eye Center. Please call 346-222-6626 to speak to a member of staff who will be more than happy to assist you.

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