Do you have spontaneous nosebleeds? Do you know what your blood pressure is? If you have the former, you may want to know the latter. And if you already know you have high blood pressure, you should watch out for the bleeds.

Korean researchers just published a study that found people with high blood pressure had a higher risk of epistaxis (the medical word for nosebleeds) and these bleeds are often bad enough to require a trip to the emergency department (also known as ER).

The researchers looked at 14 years of records of more than 70,000 adults. They divided the subjects into 2 equal groups: those who had high blood pressure (hypertension) and those who did not. Otherwise, the patients were healthy and none were taking any anticoagulants (blood thinners) that could increase bleeding risk.

At the end of the study, the researchers found that participants in the high blood pressure group were 47% more likely to have a spontaneous nosebleed. This is a nosebleed not caused by trauma, nor by surgery or disease. Those in the high blood pressure group also were almost 3 times as likely than the other group to need treatment in the emergency department, usually nasal packing to stop the bleeding.

The researchers noted that they didn’t know why those with hypertension had more spontaneous nosebleeds, but since chronic high blood pressure causes damage to the blood vessels, this could be one reason. “Medical counseling about epistaxis is advisable for individuals with hypertension, and the presence of hypertension should be considered in managing nasal bleedings,” they concluded.