Eyelid Surgery for Someone with Sjogren's Disease?

I have rheumatoid arthritis and Sjogren's disease resulting in very dry eyes. I use restasis drops twice a day as well as plaquenil. If I don't use restasis, my eyes are actually difficult to open in the morning, burn during the day and I get bumps under the lids. I would love to have eyelid surgery because I want to look younger but is that wise? What is the risk? Would I be able to continue with restasis immediately after surgery? Does anyone know a doctor who specializes in eyelid surgery for people with my complications?

Doctor Answers 3

Conservative blepharoplasty for patients with Sjögren’sdisease

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Indeed, you do have dry eyes from Sjögren’s disease. Continue taking Restasis and Plaquenil. Regarding the upper eyelid surgery, it is acceptable to perform it; however, do not have any of the orbicularis oculi muscle resected during your surgery. Be very conservative on the skin removal on the upper lids so as not to have a closure issue. Punctal plugs should also be performed by your ophthalmologist to keep more tears in the eyes if you have not done already. You will have a 3% to 5% risk of making the dry eyes even worse than you currently are after a blepharoplasty procedure.

Seattle Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 158 reviews

Don't do eyelid surgery if you have Sjogren's syndrome.

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There is always a possibility of worsening your dry-eye after eyelid, cosmetic surgery. The post-surgical swelling alone will make most people's eyes temporarily dry.

You should consult a board-certified facial plastic surgeon to discuss what you CAN safely do to improve the way you look and feel.

I hope this helps, and best regards.

Eric M. Joseph, MD
West Orange Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 435 reviews

It is not impossible for you to have eyelid surgery

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Dear Jahlie

You need a detailed consultation to determine if it is feasible for you to have eyelid surgery. Surgery must be done very conservatively. This means accepting less benefit than someone who does not have your issues. Also, you will need even more aggressive dry eye support while you recover from eyelid surgery.

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