Any anime or manga fan will tell you that the sight of characters suffering sudden, sporadic nosebleeds when they’re sexually aroused is not uncommon in Japanese-created works.
A male character catches a glimpse of a girl undressing, a girl has the object of her affection wink seductively at her, a character trips and finds his face inches from a female character’s ample bosom; the result is always the same- a flushed face followed by a gushing nosebleed.
The idea is that sexual arousal causes an increase in blood pressure, which in turn sets off a nosebleed. It’s certainly true that arousal or embarrassment can cause us to flush– I can clearly recall my face bursting into flames when I was 12 years old and the girl in my class whom I was madly in love with was dared to kiss me on the cheek– but could it really cause a nosebleed?
NicoNico News turned to a medical professional to find out whether there’s any truth to the anime phenomenon, or whether it’s just an old wives’ tale…