Does Daily Contact Lens Use After Blepharoplasty Ruin Skin Around Eyes?

After eyelid surgery, I know it is recommended that you should not wear contact lens for several weeks. Once you are healed from blepharoplasty and start to wear contact lens, does the daily inserting of contact lens ruin the skin around your eye? Thanks.

Doctor Answers 9

Contact lens use and eyelid surgery

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 I generally ask my patients to refrain for 2 weeks from contact lens wear after surgery.  I also would recomend that you stretch the lids skin as liitle as possible to insert the lenses to help maintain the result. 

Daily contact lens use okay 10 days after blepharoplasty surgery

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Patients should wait approximately ten days after their surgery to resume wearing contact lenses. At this time the insertion and removal of the contact lenses will not affect blepharoplasty results.

Daily lower eyelid manipulation may result in sagging of the lower lid

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Wearing contact lenses a few days after surgery should not be a problem. The larger question concerns stretching of the lower eyelid skin and support structures over time. The daily pulling of the lower eyelid when inserting a contact lens should be kept to a minimum. Over time this can cause a weakening of these delicate support structures and may result in a sagging of the lower lid.

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Contacts Use After Blepharoplasty

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You can safely resume it and it will not ruin your blepharoplasty results after the initial two weeks of healing. Just be gentle. The long term concerns are more to do with weakness of levator muscle by stretching it but even that is not common.


Contact lens use will not "ruin" your skin around your eyes

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Usually after eyelid surgery it is recommended to not use contacts for only a few days.

Your surgeon will advise depending on the specific type of surgery you have.

It is usually a matter of comfort because your normal tear production may be altered for a bit after surgery.

There should be no long term deleterious effects on the skin around the eyes form the normal insertion of contact lenses. Obviously be gentle and don't stretch or pull the skin any more than required to get the lens in.

John E. Gross, MD
Los Angeles Plastic Surgeon

Dry eyes

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Montana in Hawaii,

The recommendation against wearing contacts following blepharoplasty is mostly based on the alteration of your tear production and the fact that you may have dry eyes for a short time after surgery. Any repeated pulling or stretching of your eyelid skin over time will eventually lead to looser skin. Good luck!

As a rule, contact lens use is not a problem after eyelid surgery

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Dear Montana,

Yes, your mother was right. Severe rubbing of the eyelids is bad for the skin. However, the gentle traction on the eyelid that is need to insert a contact lens is generally not a problem. Remember, millions and millions of people wear contacts lens. If there was a big problem with this, we would have developed definitive information regarding this issue.

On the other hand, immediately after eyelid surgery, the eyelids are swollen, tender and contact lens wear may not be a good idea until things have healed. I recommend that my patients plan on not wearing contact lens for about 10 days. Of course as anyone who wears contacts lens should have back up glasses, it is a simple matter of wearing the glasses until things are healed enough to resume contact lens wear.

Finally, some people who are in contact lens probably should not be wearing them. Typically these are individuals who have allergies to the proteins that chronically build up on the lens or lack sufficient tears to support the lens, or have chronic lack of corneal irritation from the lens with dilation of the little blood vessel at the edge of the cornea.

This type of issues may reach a tipping point after eyelid surgery-the proverbial straw that breaks the camels back. Anyone doing eyelid surgery should be appropriately trained to recognize these types of issues before the eyelid surgery. Unfortunately, many surgeons who perform eyelid surgery lack the necessary background in ophthalmology to do an appropriate examination.

This is why I encourage individuals to look for a fellowship trained oculoplastic surgeon if they are considering eyelid surgery rather than a general plastic surgeon or facial plastic surgeon. The American Society of Ophthalmic Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery (ASOPRS) maintains a website with a directory to assist you to find a highly qualified surgeon in your area:

Kenneth D. Steinsapir, MD
Beverly Hills Oculoplastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 26 reviews

Contacts are fine.

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There is no problem with contact lens use after or before a blepharoplasty. Usually my patients can put them in a few days post op.

Eyelids are delicate, whether or not you have surgery.

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Eyelids are delicate, whether or not you have surgery.

Eyelids stretch with age. As a general rule, rubbing, or pulling on your eyelids tends to gradually make them stretch and age more quickly. The answer is that you should try your best to pull very gently on your eyelids when putting in or taking out your contact lenses.

Marc Cohen, MD
Philadelphia Oculoplastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 24 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.