Why Can't Hypothyroidism Patients Have Surgery for Puffy Eyes?

I have hypothyroidism and have always had a little eye puffiness. However, now it is extreme. I have read patients with hypothyroidism can't have the surgery to remove the bags under their eyes, why is that?

Doctor Answers 4

Hypothyrodisim and eye surgery

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If you have baggy lower lids, you certainly should be able to have surgery. Patients with goiter can get exophthalmos. These patients can have prominent globes due to internal orbital fat and muscle hypertrophy and may be at risk for dry eye. Sometimes these patients need fracturing of the bony orbit to give more room to the globe itself.

New York Plastic Surgeon
4.2 out of 5 stars 30 reviews

Hypothyroidism and eyelid surgery

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Hypothyroidism and eyelid surgery are not exclusive. What that means is that patients who have puffiness from chronic hypothyroidism can have surgery. What your surgeon needs to be careful of is that he does not remove too much fatty tissue so that you do not get a hollowed appearance. The same goes for the skin of the lower eyelid if that requires removal, too much there can result in the eyelids pulling downward creating difficulties with eyelid closure. The other concern is to make sure that if your surgeon cuts in front of the eyelid instead of behind the eyelid to remove the fat bags that he doesn't make the incision too close to the lashes since hypothyroidism predisposes to hair loss and you do not want that to occur. Finally, the opposite or hyperthyroidism (too much thyroid hormone) should have eyelid surgery avoided due to risks associated with the eye muscles. I hope this information helps.

Scott Trimas, MD
Jacksonville Facial Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 20 reviews

Hypothyroidism and Puffy Eyes

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In most cases there is no reason why hypothyroid patients with puffy eyes could not have a procedure to improve the "bags". It is important that you have a thorough eye examination by an Ophthalmologist and that he/she discusses the findings with your plastic, facial plastic or ophthalmic plastic surgeon. Be sure to question your surgeon as to the potential risks and complications, expected results and limitations of such procedures. In addition, although it is not common, ask what he/she would do if these complications arise and what your financial burden might be.

Theodore Katz, MD, FACS
Philadelphia Plastic Surgeon

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Puffy eyes and hypothyroidism

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Hypothryoidism patients can have surgery for puffiness of their lower eyelids. There are numerous procedures that have been described for this. In some instance, caution is advised because, patients may be more prone to dry eye syndrome or a condition called exophthalmos (prominence of the globe of the eye). However, patients must be examined and the cause of the puffy eyelids must first be determined and and appropriate procedure performed.

Otto Joseph Placik, MD
Chicago Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 86 reviews

These answers are for educational purposes and should not be relied upon as a substitute for medical advice you may receive from your physician. If you have a medical emergency, please call 911. These answers do not constitute or initiate a patient/doctor relationship.