Three weeks after my lower blepharoplasty, my right eye became puffy and "bubbled". Last week, they were still looking great; smooth, tight, no circles, bruising gone. Then I woke up yesterday and they were puffy with circles, the right eye worse, looking as if I never had surgery. Today, the left eye went down and has improved, still a bit puffy but the right eye is worse. It looks as if I were punched in the eye, but without bruising. I don't understand why last week they looked great and now look as if I never had the surgery. What happened, and what can I do about this?
Puffiness 3 Weeks After Blepharoplasty
Doctor Answers 6
Check with your surgeon
DemiGirl, While there are many factors that may contribute to delayed swelling around your eyes - including lymphatics, thin tissue, gravity - it is best that you have your surgeon examine your eyes soon to make sure that you do not have something more serious, such as infection or cellulitis, going on.
Be patient for your blepharoplasty results
As everyone else has said, let your surgeon examine you, but most likely it will resolve on its own.
Time is your friend
For post-operative questions or problems it is always important to contact your treating surgeon.
This may be within the range of normal healing since you're only 3 weeks out (although usually my patients have a large portion of the swelling resolved at this point). It sounds like the swelling had improved but some degree of swelling returned. After any surgery channels (called lymphatics) are disrupted imparing the body's ability to return fluid that may accumulate it tissue. Over time the body restores these channels.
In my San Francisco practice it recommend my bleph patients to sleep with their head elevated, use cool compresses and of course contact me if swelling does not improve.
Other causes could include reaction to suture or even seasonal allergies.
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Lymphatics heal slowly
The lower eyelids drain the swelling through channels called lymphatics. These channels are injured during the blepharoplasty. Anything that causes excess fluid build-up around the eye can cause the swelling which you describe.
Things that can cause the swelling include:
- Salty foods
- Spicy foods
- Sleeping on your face
- Allergic reactions to foods or topical creams
However, with time, up to 6 months, the lymphatics improve and so will you.
Intermittent swelling after eyelid surgery is normal
Usually intermittent swelling is normal post-blepharoplasty. This may change with activity level, diet, amongst other things. The eyes may also be a bit more sensitive to changes after surgery and one response is swelling.
If the eyes feel irritated or dry, check with your doctor.
Dhaval M. Patel
double board certified