Nasal drug administration has been used as an alternative route for the systemic availability of drugs restricted to intravenous administration. This is due to the large surface area, porous endothelial membrane, high total blood flow, the avoidance of first-pass metabolism, and ready accessibility. The nasal administration of drugs, including numerous compound, peptide and protein drugs, for systemic medication has been widely investigated in recent years. Drugs are cleared rapidly from the nasal cavity after intranasal administration, resulting in rapid systemic drug absorption. Approaches are discussed here for increasing the residence time of drug formulations in the nasal cavity, resulting in improved nasal drug absorption. The article highlights the importance and advantages of the nasal drug delivery systems stressed upon bioadhesive properties. Bioadhesive, or more appropriately, mucoadhesive systems have been prepared for both oral and peroral administration in the past. The nasal mucosa presents an ideal site for bioadhesive drug delivery systems. In this review we discuss the effects of microspheres and other bioadhesive drug delivery systems on nasal drug absorption. Drug delivery systems, such as microspheres, liposomes and gels have been demonstrated to have good bioadhesive characteristics which swell easily when in contact with the nasal mucosa. These drug delivery systems have the ability to control the rate of drug clearance from the nasal cavity as well as protect the drug from enzymatic degradation in nasal secretions.