Ptosis surgery has been bleeding for 4 days. What to do? If stitches are removed, should it go back to where it was pre-surgery?

My doc said I needed to wait for the swelling to go back down before she could flip the lid and redo the stitches but I am concerned she just didn't want to be bothered. She did not return my calls over the weekend though she said she would check in on me. She prescribed steroids for swelling. Is it best to just remove stitches, let it heal and find another doc vs letting her "flip the lid" and restitch like she suggested.

Doctor Answers 2

Bleeding 4 days after ptosis surgery

To have even red blood tinged tears 4 days after ptosis surgery seems like a lot. Blood vessels in the eyelid are very small and usually with the pressure of swelling, it should stop unless you have some kind of coagulation issue or take blood thinning medications (like Aspirin). Have you tried simply applying gentle pressure to your closed eyelids? Leaving the sutures in place should hold your incision together and help the bleeding stop. I would not have the sutures removed prematurely. 


Pasadena Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 23 reviews

This is not your surgeons fault but it is her responsibility.

What should be done will vary depending on how briskly you are bleeding.  If you have a minimal amount of redness in the tears, that is one thing.  If you are having continuous bleeding from the eyelid, that is another thing.  It is honestly a simple matter to take you back to surgery, anesthetize you, turn the eyelid and determine where the bleeding is coming from. Usually what is going on is the the suture has penetrated a small blood vessel associated with the eyelid.  This can often be cauterized without distrubing the wound.  The choice of waiting out the bleeding can work but when it is clear that it is not working, surgery is appropriate now.

Kenneth D. Steinsapir, MD
Los Angeles Oculoplastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 23 reviews

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