How Can I Relieve Long-Lasting Bruising After Eyelid Surgery

I had a lower Blepharoplasty performed 3 months ago and experienced severe bruising which settled below my eye. I applied cold compresses for twelve days, and discovered a topical arnica treatment (bruise guard)that I have applied since then. The bruises are still present, brownish and puffy in color, and are in a moon shape crescent on the upper most portion of my cheeks. I have massaged them, applied bruise guard daily, and want to know what else can be done. I look more tired than ever with the bruises. Deb

Doctor Answers 7

After 3 months it may not be bruises

It may be that there are bruises that last a long time.  But, after 3 months it may not be bruises.  it may simply be the vasculature under the skin - which now may be more obvious if the skin has been lifted up during the blepharoplasty.  So, the cause of the dark circles has to be determined.  If it is vascular sometimes IPL or Intense Pulse Light treatment may be helpful.  If it is pigmentation, hydroquinone may be helpful.

New York Oculoplastic Surgeon
4.7 out of 5 stars 66 reviews

Discoloration from bruising after eyelid surgery.

The discoloration, that you are describing, after bruising from your lower eyelid surgery 3 months ago is most likely hemosiderin pigment that has stained the skin.  This discoloration most often goes away on it's own but can take 6-12 months.  You can see a dermatologist, in your area, for treatment options if your eyelid surgeon gives you a referral.

Francis R. Palmer, III, MD
Beverly Hills Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.6 out of 5 stars 24 reviews

It will go away

If and when bruising is extensive, there is simply more blood-related pigment left in the skin that takes longer to resolve. You are doing the right things--arnica has been shown to help, but usually in prevention more that recovery. Gentle massage helps also. IPL's and lasers may help, but may cause further down time, so be careful with how intense these are used. Ultimately, time is on your side--use a good concealer and gradually the color will go away.

Reginald Rice, MD
Folsom Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.3 out of 5 stars 8 reviews

Give it time

Thank you for your questions. You are taking the right steps to help with bruising. Be patient and give it time. The best things you can do is wait (about 6-12 months) for all the bruising and discoloration to subside. Continue with icing and cold compresses, along with gentle massage. Best of luck!

Dhaval M. Patel 
double board certified 
Plastic surgeon 
Hoffman Estates

Dhaval M. Patel, MD
Hoffman Estates Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 93 reviews

Bruising after lower eyelid surgery

Bruising is expected after eyelid surgery and it usually resolves after 7 to 10 days.  Persistent bruising and discoloration of the soft tissues can occur.  There is really no magic cure as this will ultimately resolve on its own.  Occasionally alternating warm and cool compresses can help as well as on over the counter herbal product, Bromelean.  The usual antibruising dose is 500 mg twice a day between meals.

Jeffrey Zwiren, MD
Atlanta Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 19 reviews

Eyelid Surgery

Your bruising is longer than we are accustomed to seeing.  You may be taking aspirin like compounds such as aspirin, bufferin, advil, Naprosyn, or other NSAID drugs.  These may contribute to this bruising.  You may also be taking herbs like ginko biloba which also contribute to bruising.  If you are taking any aspirin or aspirin-like medication, stop until you are healed.  Also, stop herb therapy if you are taking any.  Supplementation should consist of only a multivitamin like a centrum once a day, and a healthy diet.

Vivek Bansal, MD
Danville Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 26 reviews

Bruising after Eyelid surgery

Eyelid surgery, or blepharoplasty, can frequently lead to mild bruising under the eyes.  This typically resolves after 10 days.  However, persistent bruising at 3 months after surgery may be the result of hemosiderin deposits in the skin.  This may slowly fade and at times can take 6 months to 1 year before it resolves.  IPL/ light therapy or laser treatment may expedite things.  

Etai Funk, MD
Houston Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 63 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.