How Can I Recover Faster from Cheek Implants?

I had my lower blepharoplasty (fat sparing) on January 23 and I had heavy bruising on the right eye. I even had blood shots at the sclera. It slowly went away though. On Feb 17, I had my cheek implants done and now I am so swollen at my jowls. I am taking Bromelain, Vitamin C, Arnica, how could I make the recovery speedy? Could diuretics and Vitamin K Menadione also affect my recovery?

Doctor Answers 11

Recovery after cheek implant surgery

Patients can expect swelling and bruising after cheek implant surgery. During this procedure, implants are placed directly over the bone. Whenever we manipulate the bone and facial surgery patients can experience significant swelling and bruising. To help alleviate this, it is recommended to place ice onto the affected areas and to elevate your head as much as possible. Discuss with your plastic surgeon the diet that he wishes you to be on and if any mouthwashes are recommended. This is important if the implants were placed on intraoral approach.

Miami Plastic Surgeon
4.7 out of 5 stars 101 reviews

You are going through normal cheek implant recovery

Malar and submalar implants can be very rewarding AFTER the initial swelling has subsided. We routinely prepare our patients for 7 to 10 days of recovery before they START recognizing the improvements, but it still will not be the final result. It is this needed patience that makes recovery after cheek implants sometimes challenging.

Otherwise, I have not much to add to the recommendations provided by the other surgeons.

Best wishes for a smooth recovery!

Frank P. Fechner, MD
Worcester Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.6 out of 5 stars 48 reviews

Avoid diuretics after cheek implants

I would agree with my colleagues. Manual lymphatic drainage is excellent to reduce facial swelling.

Of course, swelling will be worse in the morning.

Avoid using diuretics. They will have minimal effects on the face and could cause other problems.

Otto Joseph Placik, MD
Chicago Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 81 reviews

Quick recovery

Keep your stress levels down, avoid any exercise or activities that would increase your heart rate and blood pressure, avoid aspirin, Motrin, Vit E and many herbals, use ice and manual lymphatic drainage and you will be doing about all you can to hasten your recovery. Mother nature will take care of the rest.

Richard P. Rand, MD, FACS
Seattle Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 67 reviews

You are doing everything right

It sounds like you are doing everything correctly and it may just take time for the swelling to go away. You can look into lymphatic massage or ultrasound therapy as well which may help the tissues drain faster. Good luck.

David Shafer, MD
New York Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 75 reviews

Just arnica and wait if all labs are ok

Swelling and bruising is a function of so many body parameters including capillary fragility,platelets and coagulation numbers. If all you pre operative labs were normal i would just take the arnica and wait for the bruising to go away. Small doses of steroids are given sometimes following face lift surgery to help with the swelling .However,as any other medication,it has side effects.The one that we fear is hip necrosis.Hope that helps!

Hisham Seify, MD, PhD, FACS
Orange County Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 19 reviews

Recovery after facial surgery

Thanks for the question.

Your best way to improve the speed of your recovery is relatively simple.

Follow your plastic surgery post-op orders including care for the incisions, positioning, medications and activity levels. These are all specifically tailored for your procedure and your specific medical issues. Plastic surgeons have specific care instructions at different stages of the recovery process to maximize speed of healing, comfort and end result.

Be careful about advice from others who are not directly involved in your care. No one understands what you need for a speedy recovery better than your doctor.

Generally we would recommend no strenuous activity, head elevation and closely following incision care instructions.

I hope this helps.

Steven H. Williams, MD
San Francisco Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 49 reviews

Healing takes 2-3 months

Cheek implants are placed underneath the periosteum of the bone, and because of that it takes several weeks to a month for the swelling to subside. Full healing where all of the swelling has subsided could take two to three months. Bromelain and arnica will very minimally help any recovery. Prednisone pills will also help in the short term.

William Portuese, MD
Seattle Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 143 reviews

Swelling after Cheek Implants

At 1 week post-op, it is normal to have jowl swelling after cheek implants. Aside from ice packs and head elevation, the only other thing that I might add is a short course of methylprednisolone over 6 days. 

Daniel Reichner, MD
Newport Beach Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 45 reviews

There are no herbs or extracts that will decrease swelling after surgery.

Any operation, including cheek implants is associated with some swelling.  Arnica, Vitamin C, or any of the other numerous chemicals sold for swelling will help.  As healing proceeds at different rates for different individuals, the swelling subsides.

Vincent N. Zubowicz, MD
Atlanta Plastic Surgeon
4.7 out of 5 stars 35 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.