Face Contusion -Definition, Causes, Symptoms, Treatment of Face Contusion

A person with a facial contusion has bruised the soft tissues of the face. A contusion is a collection of blood beneath the skin, caused by an injury to the blood vessels.Face Contusion is bruising of skin and underlying tissues of the face caused by a direct blow. Contusions cause bleeding from ruptured small capillaries that allow blood to infiltrate muscles, tendons or other soft tissue. The face is particularly vulnerable to contusion because skin is so close to hard, underlying bone.

This injury refers to bruising of the soft tissues [other than bone] of the face. Contusions often cause the familiar “black and blue area,” which is caused by bleeding beneath the skin. One of the most commonly recognized facial contusions is the “black eye” . Common symptoms of facial contusions include pain and swelling at the site of the injury. Contusions around the eye  often cause the eye to close due to swelling. In this instance, the eye may require antibiotic drops to prevent infection. Any associated neck pain should make the patient
suspicious of neck fracture.

Evaluation will include x-rays of the face to the possibility of facial fracture. Examination of the eyes, ears, jaw, teeth, and facial bones will be performed by the physician. Any malfunction of jaw movement, hearing, or vision must be evaluated promptly. Unusual swelling, deformity, or asymmetry to the facial contour can indicate facial fracture. The finding of crepitation or of a spongy texture of the skin can indicate fracture to a sinus cavity. Double vision, due to the inability to move the eyes evenly in all directions, also indicates a more serious injury.Treatment of a facial contusion is with cold compresses and analgesics such as acetaminophen or ibuprofen. Aspirin should be avoided as it tends to promote bleeding. Initial discoloration will be “black and blue” turning to a green-yellow, as healing occurs over 1 to 2 weeks. Contusions around the eyes often result in discoloration . This is of no added concern. The development of “black eyes” after a head injury should make one suspect the possibility of a skull fracture.

Places where Face Contusion occurs

Face tissues, including blood vessels, muscles, tendons, nerves, covering to bone (periosteum) and connective tissue.


Causes, Signs and Symptoms of Face Contusion

Direct blow to the skin, usually from a blunt object.

  • Local swelling at the contusion site. The swelling may be round or egg-shaped and superficial or deep.
  • Pain and tenderness over the injury.
  • Feeling of firmness when pressure is exerted on the injured area.
  • Discoloration under the skin, beginning with redness and progressing to the characteristic “black and blue” bruise.

Complications in Face Contusion

Excessive bleeding. Infiltrative-type bleeding can (rarely) lead to calcification and impaired function, and facial disfiguration. Prolonged healing time if usual activities are resumed too soon. Infection if skin over the contusion is broken.

Treatment, Medication and Care for Face Contusion

For first aid, use instructions for R.I.C.E., the first letters of REST, ICE, COMPRESSION and ELEVATION.

For minor discomfort, you may use: Acetaminophen or ibuprofen. Topical liniments and ointments. Your doctor may prescribe stronger medicine for pain.

  • Use an ice pack 3 or 4 times a day. Wrap ice chips or cubes in a plastic bag, and wrap the bag in a moist towel. Place it over the injured area for 20 minutes at a time.
  • After 72 hours, apply heat instead of ice if it feels better. Use heat lamps, hot soaks, hot showers, heating pads, or heat liniments and ointments.
  • Massage gently and often to provide comfort and decrease swelling.

Dietary Cure for Face Contusion

During recovery, eat a well-balanced diet that includes extra protein, such as meat, fish, poultry, cheese, milk and eggs. Your doctor may prescribe vitamin and mineral supplements to promote healing.

Causes of Contusion without any prevalence information

The following causes of Contusion are ones for which we do not have any prevalence information.

  • Abuse
  • Brain contusions
  • Compartment syndrome
  • DOMS
  • Erythema multiforme
  • Fractures
  • Henoch Schloein purpura
  • Idiopathic thrombocytopenic purpura
  • Internal organ injuries
  • Intra- abdominal injuries
  • Intracerebral hemorrhage
  • Mongolian spots
  • Muscle ramps
  • Muscle rupture
  • Phytophotodermatitis
  • Postinflammatory hyperpigmentation
  • Sports related injuries
  • Stress fracture
  • Subarachnoid hemorrhage
  • Subdural hematoma

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2 Responses

  1. your post are very interesting it is also helpful for me thanks for sharing look forward more posts

  2. Judi Bernell says:

    Great blog. I have been wearing glasses for more than 10 years and have just recently discovered the eye exercise program by dr. Bates. The results are great!